UPDATED FOR 2013: Rome is, of course, known for its Roman specialities, but there are plenty of international kitchens to choose from. Not all of Rome’s non-Italian restaurants are amazing, but there is some really stellar stuff out there. Here are some spots I really love. Please let me know yours!
Bi Won: Decent Korean food (including gogi gui–meat-based grilled dishes) in the Esquilino neighborhood. Via Conte Verde 62; take Metro A to Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II.
Gainn: Better Korean food (especially the bossam) north of Termini. Via dei Mille 18.
Ali Babà: Proper Middle Eastern fast food near the Arco di Travertino Metro. Via Carroceto 69.
Enqutatash: This small restaurant has a special place in my heart. I lived next door for three years and when it opened, it was a newly converted garage. It’s come a long way and while it is by no means formal, Enquatatash is a charming place serving Ethiopian and Eritrean food. Viale della Stazione Prenestina 55; take the 5 or 14 tram from Termini.
Food & Beverage: One of the better Chinese restaurants in town and, while it won’t win any hospitality awards, it does offer authenticity sadly absent from the far more popular Chinese restaurants nearby. Via Giolitti 105/113; take Metro A or B to Termini.
Kabir Fast Food: A cafeteria near Piazza Vittorio serving Indian food. Via Mamiani 11; take the Metro A to Piazza Vittorio Emanuele II.
Taki: Excellent seasonal Japanese cuisine just off Piazza Cavour.
Take: Very good sushi prepared by a Kyoto born chef. Viale di Trastevere 4; take the 8 tram from Largo Argentina.
Dozoo: Really nice Japanese food in Monti, with lots of affordable lunch options and a delightful courtyard for al fresco dining when weather permits.
And now for my least favorites, some of which get good reviews in spite of being very bad: Hang Zhou (the most mediocre Chinese food imaginable), Hasekura (a ridiculously overpriced Japanese place in Monti serving pitifully uncreative sushi that tastes anything but fresh), Sitar (in a word, terrible), Africa (this East African restaurant serves food that is beyond bland–a crime against injera!), Mexico al Aventino (possible the worst food I have ever eaten, after the now defunct Grigliera La Vaca, of course!).
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