Casa Bleve is among the most finest places in Rome to drink wine, their elegant dining room a perfect pair with their spectacular cellar. But it is the down-to-earth atmosphere in spite of it all that makes me love this place.
The Bleve family has been in the wine business for decades. Their first shop was La Bottega del Vino in the Ghetto (more on that later) and they opened Casa Bleve on Via del Teatro Valle near the Pantheon a decade ago.
Since then, Casa Bleve has undergone several changes and renovations, the most recent of which was the abandonment of their legendary lunch buffet in favor of an a la carte menu. Indeed, this is the same menu that they began offering at dinner a couple of years ago.
The a la carte lunch and dinner menus feature some of the same items you remember from their cold lunch buffet, like their famous involtini—thin slices of meat, fish, vegetables, or fruit stuffed with various fillings. But there are hot dishes, as well, including a few pastas and a handful of second courses. I have posted a sample menu below.
Now back to La Bottega del Vino. This place was closed for a while and reopened a few years back. Since then, it has functioned as a typical enoteca, selling bottles of wine to take away and serving wine and food at tables in the shop among the displayed bottles.
Works are currently underway to transform La Bottega del Vino. The plan is to turn it into a more sales oriented destination with a focus on cheeses and salumi. There will no longer be table service, but patrons will be able to eat their purchases at a handful of tables in the shop. La Bottega del Vino is scheduled to reopen in its new incarnation in October.
In the meantime, I’ll get by on Casa Bleve’s a la carte menu. Here is a sample:
Gli Sfizi di Casa Bleve
Involtini (Roasted pepper stuffed with tuna, capers, and anchovies, Salmon stuffed with fresh goat cheese, Squash blossom stuffed with ricotta and pistachios, Turkey breast stuffed with truffeled ricotta, Pineapple stuffed with ricotta and cinnamon); Steak tartare; Buffalo mozzarella with Cantabrian anchovies.
Fin de Claire Oysters
€3 each or €25 a plate
Cod carpaccio with cherry tomatoes, taggiasche olives, and capers from Pantelleria
Smoked and marinated fish plate: Norwegian salmon, tuna bresaola, swordfish, anchovies
Salumi: Culatello cotto alla brace, Culatello di Zibello, Prosciuto Friulano di Sauris, Salumi misti, Cecina de Leon, Prosciutto Iberico
€18-30 a plate
Mozzarella di Bufala with baked cherry tomatoes and taggiasche olives
€20 small plate, €30 large plate
Formaggi Misti: Caprini Az. Ag. Boscasso, Bagoss, Provolone di bufala, Caciocavallo Podolico, Gorgonzola Classico Extra, Pecorino di Fossa, Ragusano Modicano
€20 plate, €30 big plate, €50 large tasting
Fresh squid ink fettucine with red shrimp and basil
Paccheri di Gragnano with seafood, arugula pesto, and toasted pine nuts
Spaghetti with cherry tomatoes, basil, and Vacche Rosse parmesan