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Pizza in Rome

A national dish that divides a nation

The food of kings

Pizza has its historical origins in Naples, where it was a favoured dish of the ruling Bourbon kings in 16th century. If you have ever said to yourself the pizza back home tastes nothing like the pizza in Italy, well that’s also true across Italy itself, as everyone has their own way of interpreting what is quite simply water, flour, cheese, (tomatoes), oil and something else of your choice.

In Rome, you can find thin crust Roman pizza and more doughy Neapolitan pizza. However all good pizzeria have one thing in common - a wood burning oven (forno a legna). Unique to Rome is “pizza al taglio”, which are long strips of pizza to go. You have it cut to the size of piece you’d like.


When eating out, you usually have a cover charge and a service charge included in your bill. The former covers the bread and the latter the service. We are not talking a lot of money here, maybe 3-5 Euro per person. The rule for tipping is: tip if you were happy with the service and 10-15% is fine. For example, leave 5 Euro for a 30 Euro bill and 10 Euro for a 70 Euro bill. You never need to leave more than 20 Euro unless you want to impress the bartender or waitress.

Some recommendations


Area: Via di San Giovanni in Laterano, 88
Tel: +39067096332

Tip: Roman pizza is very thin so you should take a few starters like bruscetta or a supli else have a second course too.

Pizza Ciro

Area: Piazza S. Apollinare (Piazza Navona)
Tel: +39066786015 • www.pizzaciro.it

Tip: Ciro does Neapolitan pizza which is more doughy so go easy on starters. Watch the guys making it Neapolitans know how to put on a good show even when cooking.

The experience and costs

There is an unwritten rule that when at a pizzeria, “he who talks loudest has the most interesting thing to say”.  Make sure you arrive early (not before 7pm as the oven will not be ready) and get a few drinks in you before the crowd builds. In Rome be sure to have a starter of fritti – suppli and fiori di zucca - or a bruscetta. Have a look at our recipe films to see how they are made. Beer, pizza and starters will set you back 20-25 Euro tops pp.

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Stephen content writer Rome

By Stephen Wheeler Licensed Tourism translator