In the 19 months we have done TraveLazio, dedicated to day trips from Rome, we have been to 38 different towns, all with their individual draws and charms. That means we also have been to 38 different restaurants, all with their individual menus and ambiance.

On Sunday Marina and I left for two weeks in the United States and didn’t make it to a new Lazio destination. In its stead we decided to do a little compilation. If you’re thinking of coming to Rome or living in Italy and you want to get off the beaten track, keep this list of best restaurants handy. Every restaurant is local with homemade food that makes Italian country and seaside cooking some of the best in the world.

We don’t remember seeing many other travelers in any of these places. We don’t remember seeing many English menus. In fact, it’s best to know a little Italian before you walk through these doors. 

What we did was break up the list into two parts. Today are the 10 best restaurants in Lazio north of Rome. At a future date we will do the best in the south. We’ve been to 20 towns in northern Lazio and 18 in southern. Cutting the list to the 10 best could’ve been done by throwing darts. They were that close.

So we listed them in the alphabetic order in the towns they’re in. Some of these we visited in early 2023. We don’t take responsibility for changes in management or food. We will take responsibility in luring you away from the crowds of Rome and into the gastro paradise that surrounds the city and few know about.

Buon appetito!

Top 10 Restaurants in Northern Lazio
Restaurant Tramontana, Allumiere

👉🏽 Allumiere

Ristorante Tramontana, Via Braccianese Claudia 61, 39-07-662-1831/07-662-8831, 11:45 a.m.-4 p.m., 7-10 p.m. Wednesday-Monday. Tramontana has been in the Moroni family for 85 years covering five generations. Check out the 9,000-piece jigsaw puzzle of a 1611 world map on the wall.

Tramontana serves down-home Italian country meals ranging from fettuccine to grilled local meats. Dinner of a mixed bruschetta plate, vegetables, fries, steak, bread, tiramisu dessert and a half liter of local red wine was €25.

Top 10 Restaurants in Northern Lazio
Restaurant Trattoria del Cimino, Caprarola

👉🏽 Caprarola

Trattoria del Cimino, Via Filippo Nicolai 44, 39-07-61-646-173/39-371-484-2982,, 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m., 7:30-9:30 p.m. Wednesday-Friday; 11 a.m.-6 p.m., 7:30-9:30 p.m. Saturday-Sunday; 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m. Tuesday. 

Opened in 1895 and in the Calistri family for five generations, Cimino is in an elegant restaurant built in the town’s first palace built in 1300. Behind the elegant bar is a marble slab from the Etruscan period before the Roman Republic between 8th-3rd century B.C.

According to the wine and food website Vinous, Cimino has “La Migliore Amatriciana d’Italia (The best amatriciana in Italy).” The amatriciana truly is spectacular and made with pici, the short, twisty pasta native to the area. Mains start at €12.

Top 10 Restaurants in Northern Lazio
Restaurant Trattoria dei Cocci, Cerveteri

👉🏽 Cerveteri

Trattoria dei Cocci, Via Agillina 41, 39-379-199-7005, 6 p.m.-midnight Monday-Thursday, 1-3:30 p.m., 6:30 p.m.-midnight Friday, 1-3:30 p.m., 6 p.m.-midnight Saturday, 12:30-3 p.m.-6 p.m. midnight Sunday. 

Classic Roman dishes such as amatriciana, carbonara and, the challenging Roman street dish of rigatoni pajata (intestine of unweaned calf), starting at €12.
My gnocchi with sausage was excellent. Wash it down with Cerveteri’s highly regarded mixed red wine served as the inexpensive house red. Lunch for two with wine was €35.

Top 10 Restaurants in Northern Lazio
Restaurant Maa, Civitavecchia

👉🏽 Civitavecchia

Maa, Lungoport Gramsci 7, 39-320-236-5956, 39-07-66-809-688, “Maa” is Hindu for “mother” and the Indian-run seafood restaurant opened five years ago in a plum location. The patio with white-tableclothed tables and big picture windows look out at the sea.

Lots of seafood pastas and fresh fish. We recommend the shrimp cocktail in a luscious sauce of mayonnaise, catsup and vodka and the paccheri polpo, guanciale and pecorino: flat, square pasta with octopus, pig’s cheek and pecorino cheese in a rich tomato sauce. Lunch for two with a bottle of Falanghina white wine from Campania was €70.

Top 10 Restaurants in Northern Lazio
Restaurant Capanno dei Pescatori, Fregene

👉🏽 Fregene

Il Capanno dei Pescatori, Via Silvi Marina 21, 39-06-6941-6497, 9 a.m-midnight. Our favorite place to dine on the entire Lazio coast. Fresh seafood dishes and salads with shaded tables in the sand and views of the sea.

The grilled calamari and seafood salad are especially good and they bring Lazio white wine out in an ice bucket.Lunch for two with wine usually costs me €50-60.

Top 10 Restaurants in Northern Lazio
Restaurant La Tavernetta, Poggio Mirteto

👉🏽 Poggio Mirteto

Ristorante La Tavernetta, Via Diego Eusebi 47, 39-339-496-0457,

Located on a quiet walkway in the heart of Centro Storico’s residential area, La Tavernetta specializes in fresh fish and Lazio dishes. My fresh spada (swordfish) was excellent and Marina’s orata (bream), both €15, was huge. Lunch including a half liter of wine was €44.

Top 10 Restaurants in Northern Lazio
Restaurant Bianca, Santa Marinella

👉🏽 Santa Marinella

Bianca Ristorante, Lungomare G. Marconi 9, 39-07-665-34744,, noon-3:30 p.m., 6:30-10:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday, noon-3:30 p.m. Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday. 

Located just north of the beach, it’s the perfect place for a romantic meal on the sea. Outdoor tables ring a gated wall and big glass windows enclose the dining room with heart-swelling views of the water.
The 12-year-old restaurant, attached to the Hotel Villa delle Palme, specializes in seafood pasta.

Get the pasta spezzata con sugo di pesce, short, thin, tube pasta in a soupy sauce filled with seafood. Mains €18-€35. I paid €56 for two, including wine.

Top 10 Restaurants in Northern Lazio
Restaurant Romeo Ristomare, Santa Severa

👉🏽 Santa Severa

Romeo Ristomare. Lungomare Pyrgi, 39-07-665-70997,, Friday-May 12 12:30-3 p.m. May 11 12:30-3 p.m., 7:30-9:30 p.m.  May 15-31 Tuesday-Sunday 12:30-3 p.m. Saturday 12:30-3 p.m., 7:30-9:30 p.m. June 12:30-3 p.m., 7:30-9:30 p.m. Tuesday-Sunday. July-August 12:30-3 p.m., 7:30-9:30 p.m.

Romeo has graced the beach for 40 years with a huge picture window looking out over the sand and sea. Fresh seafood starting at €16. Try the gnochetti di patate viola, crema di salmone (small potato dumplings in salmon sauce and sprinkled with pistachios). Wash it down with a Pecorino from Umbria. Lunch for two including antipasto, dessert and wine was €85.

Top 10 Restaurants in Northern Lazio
Restaurant La Sfera d'Oro, Sutri

👉🏽 Sutri

La Sfera d’Oro, Piazza del Comune 36, 39-07-61-600-030,, noon-3:30, 7-11:30 p.m. Wednesday-Monday. Seventy-year-old restaurant is third-generation family run featuring scattered antiques and a photo of the main piazza from 1900. My pappardalle di lepre (wide, flat homemade noodles with wild hare sauce) was fabulous. I paid €33.50 for two.

Top 10 Restaurants in Northern Lazio
Restaurant La Torre del Lavello, Tuscania

👉🏽 Tuscania

La Torre di Lavello, Via Torre di Lavello 27, 39-07-61-434-258, noon-11 p.m. Thursday-Tuesday. Housed in a medieval building, the 23-year-old restaurant is in the shadow of the Torre di Lovello.

The outdoor tables have a tremendous view of the countryside and landmark St. Peter’s and castle beyond. Get the enormous cheese plate served with sliced pears and honey. This national park is a big wild boar hunting area and I had paccheri (wide, flat pasta) al ragù di cinghiale (wild boar) e arancia (orange). The orange added an inviting sweet taste. Mains start at €12. Lunch for two with wine was €54.