on July 3, 2012
Before going to Rome, we had been told that food was extremely expensive. Because of this, we looked around a lot before deciding where to eat as we didn’t want to end up paying more than we needed to. On our first day in Rome, after visiting the Spanish Steps, we came across Caffe Leonardo which is just around the corner. To get to Caffe Leonardo head south from the Spanish Steps, towards the huge Colonna dell'Immacolata which you cannot miss. On your left is a small tourist shop and behind that is Caffe Leonardo. The restaurant is tucked away a little bit in comparison to other restaurants in the area but all this means is that you aren’t paying the prices for somewhere on the doorstep of an attraction. We were seated immediately as the restaurant wasn’t too busy and given the option of inside or out. Although the idea of being inside was tempting, I still wanted to be in the sun no matter how hot it was. The restaurant has a lovely outside seating area with space for about 30 people. The outside seating area is covered so if the weather is bad, you can still sit outside. When we visited though it was extremely hot and during the summer, machines giving out mists of water are placed on the edges of the coverings. I thought this would be a little weird and gross while eating but it didn’t actually bother me at all. In fact, it was quite nice to be cooled down as it was so hot. After being seated we were given menus which include all meals and drinks available. Our waiter left us alone for a reasonable amount of time before coming over to ask if we were ready yet. All of the staff we spoke to here seemed to speak English which we were quite thankful for. The menu has a wide variety of drinks to choose from, both soft drinks, alcoholic like beers and also cocktails so there is something for everyone. What I really wanted was an ice cold glass of coke which cost €3.50. My boyfriend opted for a Peroni which cost €6. Both drinks were reasonably priced. When we were looking through the food choices on the menu, there was so much we wanted that we couldn’t decide. Being boring and safe, we opted for a margarita pizza which only cost €8. We were both far too hot to eat too much so we decided to share which doesn’t seem like the thing to do in Italy. After I ordered the pizza, our waiter asked what my boyfriend wanted so it looked like people in Italy more often than not have a whole pizza to themselves. Bringing our drinks out only took a couple of minutes while our food came in less than 10 minutes. I was shocked at how quick the service was here but was very happy that we didn’t have to wait long for our food as I was starving. Obviously Italians are famous for their pizza and pasta but now I know why. Although we had a standard margarita pizza, it was the best I’ve ever had. The base was crispy around the edges but soft enough to cut through at the same time while the topping was just enough without there being either too much sauce or cheese. After finishing our own halves, both of us wished that we had gotten one each. The only slight problem that we encountered here was when waiting to pay. We had sat for a good 10 minutes after finishing our meal and the plates had already been cleared away but then there was no waiter in sight. We had to wait quite a while before going inside to ask for our bill rather than it be brought over to us. We also weren’t asked if we wanted anything else which would have been nice. This was the only downside to our experience at Caffe Leonardo but I wasn’t too mad about being made to sit and relax in the sun. If you want to eat somewhere in Rome where the food is fantastic and not overpriced then this is the place to be. It’s easy to get to and centrally located so it wouldn’t be too far out of your way to get to.
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