From 1555 until 1870 Rome’s Jews were confined to a Ghetto by Papal decree. Though the Ghetto no longer stands (its buildings were demolished after Italian unification), visitors to Rome still come to the area to visit the community’s main synagogue and adjacent Jewish Museums. The area is the center of Jewish community life and there are several restaurants serving the local cucina ebraica, with influences reaching back to the arrival of Spanish Jews during the Inquisition era and encompassing the traditions of the Libyan Jews that came in the late 1960s.
Though the kosher restaurants in the Ghetto will be closed during Passover, one can still indulge in the typical dishes of Rome’s Jewish community in non-kosher, Gentile-owned restaurants like Dal Pompiere, Sora Margherita, Il Portico, and Piperno. Look for filetti di baccala’ (fried cod fillets), carciofi alla giudia (fried artichokes), straccetti di vitella con carciofi (strips of veal with artichokes), and torta di ricotta. Chag Sameach!