Trastevere Rome - Cooking courses in Italy
Cooking courses in Italy - Trastevere Rome
With the Taste Trails Rome cooking courses in Italy blog we try to show a side of Rome or Italy that is not a tourist honey pot , an authentic Rome or Italy that you may not come across by yourself but that is absolutely not the case with Rome Trastevere.
Trastevere this ancient warren, an immigrant enclave centuries before the birth of Christ, a historically insular community of artisans and crooks—has become a tourist trap but it is still possible to escape the madding crowd - if you know where to look.
On the west bank of the Tiber, opposite the Campo de' Fiori and just south of the Vatican, Trastevere was for centuries a working-class quarter populated by immigrants. Now the same labyrinth of cobbled streets and stunning squares is peaceful by day and chaotic by night as the endless bars and restaurants fill up with excitable young Romans and tourists.
Bruno a Roman born here just after the war tells us " Trastevere has changed almost beyond recognition in the last 30 years". He goes on to say " popular though Trastevere is, there remains something special about it. It has become so commercial and touristy and yet its heart doesn't change and for me will always be home ".
If you want the full-on Trastevere tourist experience, sit on the steps of the fountain in Piazza di Santa Maria, overlooked by a quartet of gesticulating marble bishops and a 12th-century bell tower. All around, hordes of camera-toting visitors mingle with preppy students (Trastevere is full with American colleges). As night falls, these people will be joined by throngs of young Romans threading their way to the area’s trendy bars.
Despite the hoards , there are still gems and stunning quiet places to be found. Head for the east of Viale Trastevere, which is much quieter and less touristy, and the church of Santa Cecilia. It's a magical place with a tragic story: Cecilia was condemned to a slow, agonising death for confessing her Christian beliefs. And here in the Piazza Santa Cecilia you will find one of our favourite Rome restaurants - Roma Sparita , and just don't take our word for it ask Anthony Bourdain , he raves about it too. Trastevere is full of restaurants and bars , some very touristy and gaudy , some very trendy and expensive but you will still find the little family run trattorias and pizzerias offering fine quality food and value . Just wander down the alley ways and lose yourself .
Some of the most intriguing spots in Trastevere are below ground—Roman streets and piazzas were built over in the Middle Ages, and now form a labyrinth of tunnels and chambers. On Via della VII Coorte there’s a locked doorway leading to an underground Roman firehouse. Buried beneath the San Crisogono church are the ruins of its ancient predecessor.
But then every old building here seems to have its own subterranean grotto. Below the family-run Spirito DiVino restaurant for example is a square (now a wine cellar) dating back to 80 B.C.,
Trastevere is a place of beauty , yes it can be overwhelming with hoards of tourists and students but just take a little time to wander, there is still something special about Trastevere.
With a Taste Trails Rome cooking courses in Italy week long cookery holiday , we spend the day in Rome visiting some of our favourite places. Many off the beaten track yet yards from the tourist honey pots.
Want to experience for yourself authentic Rome? Well you can with our Cooking courses in Italy.
We run the Cooking courses in Italy through out the year from March to November and for particular groups we can of course organise other dates/programs . A warm welcome awaits.
Next stop for the Taste Trails Rome cooking courses in Italy blog ,Villa Borghese .