The downside of visiting Rome during a major Catholic holiday such as the Easter long weekend is that many of the best small family-run restaurants will be closed so that staff can enjoy some much needed downtime. This made finding a restaurant open for lunch on Easter Sunday particularly difficult after a long morning spent at the Roman Forum and Palatine Hill!
Finally we stumbled across Osteria Della Suburra just a few steps away from Cavour metro station, not far from the Colosseum. Unlike most of the other cafes and restaurants in that area, Osteria Della Suburra was open for the Easter weekend trade and doing a booming business with all the tourists who had nowhere else to go.
We started our meal by sharing the Antipasto Rustico, a vegetarian-friendly cold antipasto plate that was delivered to our table only minutes after we ordered it. The zucchini, eggplant and onion on this platter was grilled perfectly with a beautifully smoky flavour, the mushrooms were firm, plump and juicy. The only main downside were the few artichokes which had been marinated in a much-too-salty mix. A minor issue – this simple plate of antipasto is well worth ordering to increase your veggie intake.
K ordered the Lasagne with Porcini Mushrooms and Asparagus, which turned out to be a surprisingly small serve for the price we paid. The lasagne was a bit disappointing with its lack of a properly crusty cheese top layer which could have provided the flavourful cheese kick and texture that it sorely needed. As it was, the lasagne was a bit mushy after having been overloaded with bechamel sauce and very little in the way of the mushrooms and asparagus. A little bit disappointing overall.
I ordered the Spaghetti Allo Scoglio, or spaghetti with as many mussels, clams and prawns as possible! This was a lovely dish, with a tomato sauce that had really soaked up the essence of the molluscs and evoked the flavours of the sea as you ate. There was a generous amount of mussels and clams included, but the prawns were unfortunately a little bit anaemic – sized more like shrimp than prawns. Still, I would order this again.
The pasta dishes at Osteria Della Suburra are a touch more expensive, quite a bit smaller, and overall not as tasty as the ones we had the day before at Ristochicco. I think the main difference is that they serve up pasta of a quality that I could replicate at home quite easily, whereas the pasta at Ristochicco was definitely from an authentic Italian kitchen. It’s not a bad option if there’s nothing else open, but doesn’t quite rate as well against other pasta joints in Rome.
Osteria Della Suburra is located at 67-69 Via Urbana in Rome, Italy. The closest Metro station is Cavour.