Shopping in Rome: a practical handbook of shops where to find the best typical products of Lazio
When you visit Rome, you have to dedicate some days exclusively to shopping. In particular, we are talking about making authentic shopping among the artisan shops that sell absolutely local products and far from the marketing department stores. But be careful! Being a tourist can also mean to be unprepared and not knowing how to distinguish when a product deserves to be bought for its originality and authenticity, or not.
The artisan shops in Rome
Craft shops are a typical and distinctive Italian sign. In the major cities of the peninsula, with a history thousands of years long, there are historical shops where the expertise was handed down through the generations. The workshop is not only the small shop that sells products made by the craftsman such as sartorial products, leather goods, jewellery, carpentry, ceramist but also food shops selling the typical products of Lazio. In particular, the area of Trastevere is the one that best collects these small businesses often located in small and hidden alleys also unknown by the Romans themselves. Their feature is they have remained almost unchanged over the time, therefore they are full of charm and history, as well as being a meeting point for local products. Recently, in addition to the older shops, new stores are beginning to stand side by side, always having in common the sale of raw materials from the region.
The food shops are assaulted by tourists who love to take home Roman and Lazio delicacies, ideal to be shared with family and friends during the most important lunches and dinners. La Latteria is a rather recent shop located in Trastevere, where once a stable with cows was situated, where milk was produced. Today, it has become a benchmark for anyone who wants to buy meat, vegetables and fish as well as locally produced milk. In this shop, it is also possible to buy wine and beer, produced in the Lazio region. Another perfect place to go to buy the best typical products is Biscottificio in Via della Luce 21. Some of the best biscuits in the city are baked there and it seems time has never gone. The recipes are typical of the past, so the desserts are still faithful to the tradition and, as soon as you enter, it will be difficult to get out of it without a package to take home.
If, on the other hand, you leave Trastevere district for a moment and enter the centre of Rome, in the heart of the Jewish Ghetto, you will find Beppe e i suoi Formaggi, selling cheese. You will immediately recognize the authenticity of the products, exclusively local. The owner relies only on certified producers. Among the main foods in the shop there are, in addition to a wide selection of cheese, also locally produced salami. Finally, Dol di origine laziale is a food and wine shop that deals only with quality food from the Lazio region. Among them, we can mention not only the typical Roman Pecorino but also that of the Sabina, the cheese of goat's milk of the Grigia Ciociaria and the salamis of the Lepini Mountains, the Friggitello of the city of Formia, the olives of Gaeta and much more.
Wine and other shops
When you visit Rome, you can get fascinated by the vastness of wine production. Often, if you choose the right taverns and trattorias, far from mass tourism, you can taste the local wines that are definitely excellent. Among the various available places in the Capital, Palatium is worth of a visit, the headquarters of wine from Lazio. There are about 100 types of wines and products from the region, as well as a thousand local products. The price is quite normal and it is definitely worth to go there. Il Goccetto is another very typical wine shop still reflecting the retro appeal of the past. It is an historical shop situated in Via dei Banchi Vecchi 14, where tradition spreads thanks to many local and valuable labels.
To be named as a real artisan workshop of clothing products and completely inspired by Rome and the Trastevere district is Trast. There, you can buy clothes made of top quality fabrics entirely made in Italy.
How to recognize the best products of Lazio
Knowing how to identify the right shops where you can breathe the air of quality, tradition and extreme respect for the raw material is absolutely important. In the same way, it is good to know which products are part of the Lazio gastronomy and therefore worth buying. In particular, there are very many salamis known throughout Italy that see their birth in Lazio. An example is the cheek lard, essential for perfect dishes like Pasta alla carbonara, Gricia and Amatriciana. The most delicious is the one from Amatrice, a town along the borders of Abruzzi.
Do not forget the Porchetta! It is done by cooking apig on the spit. The most famous Porchetta is the one of Ariccia. Passing instead to cheese, the Pecorino Romano DOP is the most common not only in the shops but also in the market of the districts. However, as in the Lazio region pastoralism is very important, also Conciato di San Vittore is very good, together with the Steccata di Morolo and Pecorino Picinisco DOP. As far as the wine production, Frascati DOCG surely is the most famous with a remarkable diffusion in the last years. Finally, the Roman artichoke PGI is the most widespread in the entire region and with which many recipes are made, such as stuffed artichokes, Jewish and Romanesque ones. Oil is also excellent, perfect to be bought and enjoyed once the journey is over. There are many varieties: Sabina DOP, Colline Pontine DOP and Tuscia DOP.
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