The Via Ostiense stretches south from Rome’s center to the Basilica di San Paolo Fuori le Mura, a pilgrimage site dedicated to St. Paul, who reputedly was beheaded on the site in the first century. Just a few hundred yards from the hulking church, past the San Paolo Metro stop, lies Via Chiabrera, a destination that attracts pilgrims of another kind: those seeking sustenance rather than penance.
There, visitors will find a fantastic gluten free bakery, a wonderful fresh pasta shop, a Sicilian tavola calda, and one of Rome’s best gourmet food and beverage shops. At Via Chiabrera 58A, Emporio del Gusto is home to the city’s finest whiskey selection. Owner and distilled beverage expert Pino Perrone stocks an enviable collection of prestigious single malt–and single cask–whiskeys, which draw aficionados and serious drinkers from all over the Rome. Though rare whiskeys are his specialty, Pino also sells a well-chosen array of grappas, wines, and Italian craft beers. Dried pastas, olive oils, vinegars, and sottoli are presented on shelves along the walls. A brightly illuminated refrigerator displays fresh and aged cheeses and salumi.
Emporio del Gusto is easy to reach with the Metro B and should rank high on the list of any local gastronome or whiskey drinker. Swing by to hear Pino wax poetic on his newest acquisitions or catch up with him at the Spirit of Scotland whisky festival he is organizing near the Circus Maximus next month.