The Absolute Best Places to Eat in Rome, Venice and Paris

10 of the Best from Andy Herbach

Author: The Traveling Professor/Wednesday, July 3, 2019/Categories: Paris, Italy

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Andy Herbach’s Top European Restaurants from his Eating and Drinking series of books.

Here are just a few of Andy Herbach’s favorite restaurants in three of Europe’s best destinations: Paris, Rome, and Venice.

Paris (from Eating & Drinking in Paris: French Menu Translator and Restaurant Guide: 9th edition)

L’Ange 20 
Don't miss this small, intimate restaurant in the heart of the Marais near the place des Vosges. Friendly, efficient, and attentive service. You can watch the chef in the open kitchen. Lively mix of tourists and Parisians enjoying reasonably priced meals. Try the excellent agneau façon sept heures (lamb cooked for seven hours). Unbelievable what the chef turns out in this small kitchen. Info: 4th/Métro Chemin Vert or Bastille. 44 rue Tournelles (at rue du Pas de la Mule). Tel. 01/ Closed Mon. and Tue. Moderate.

La Fontaine de Mars 
Red-checked tablecloths and friendly service near the Eiffel Tower. Try the poulet fermier aux morilles (free-range chicken with morel mushrooms). Prices seem to have increased since the Obamas ate here. Still, highly recommended. Info: 7th/Métro Ecole-Militaire. 129 rue St-Dominique (near Avenue Bosquet). Tel. 01/ Open daily. No lunch Sun. Moderate-Expensive.

Le Grand 8 
This friendly, small bistro is located in Montmartre near Sacrè-Coeur. Unlike most places in this touristy area, most diners are from the neighborhood. Start with a salade de chèvre chaud (warm goat cheese salad) and dine on such main courses as carré d'agneau accompagné d'un gratin de pommes de terre (rack of lamb with potato gratin). Interesting selection of wines by the glass and bottle. Ask for a seat near the back window and enjoy the great view. Info: 18th/Métro Anvers or Lamarck-Caulaincourt. 8 rue Lamarck. Tel. 01/ Closed Mon. and Tues. No lunch except Sun. Moderate.

Traditional Paris soup kitchen. The tripes à la mode de Caen is a frequent special of the day (we passed on that). Lots of tourists, and you may be seated with strangers. Expect to wait in line. You're coming here for the experience, not necessarily for the food. Info: 9th/Métro Grands Boulevards. 7 rue du Faubourg-Montmartre (off of blvd. Poissonnière). Tel. 01/ Open daily 11:30 a.m. to midnight. Inexpensive.

Venice (from Eating & Drinking in Venice: Italian Menu Translator and Restaurant Guide).

Oliva Nera
Expect a warm welcome at this small, charming osteria. Try the ossobuco (braised veal shank), baccalà (salt cod), or dishes served with nero di seppia (black squid ink). You might even leave with a complimentary bottle of the house olive oil. Info: 3417/3447 Castello. From Riva degli Schiavoni (on the waterfront), turn onto Calle della Pietà, left on Calle Bosello to Salizada dei Greci. San Zaccaria vaporetto. Tel. 041/5222170. Closed Wed. Moderate – Expensive. 

Al Prosecco

You can’t come to Italy and not sample prosecco. This sparkling white wine will tickle your tongue and quench your thirst, especially on a warm Venetian night. Great terrace and simple cichetti (the Venetian version of Spanish tapas). A glass of prosecco begins at €4 and goes up from there. Info: 1503 Santa Croce. Campo San Giacomo de l’Orio. San Stae vaporetto. Tel. 041/5240222. Closed Sun, Aug, and Jan.

Cantine del Vino gìa Schiavi
You’ll find a decent selection of Italian wine by the bottle at this wine shop. Head to the bar (there’s no seating here) where you can sample cicchetti for around €2. Try the interesting specialty tartare di tonno, tuna dusted with unsweetened cocoa powder. There’s a large selection of wine by the glass, most from the Veneto region, starting at €2. If you ask for a fuori, you’ll be served your wine in a plastic cup so that you can take it outside. Info: 992 Dorsoduro.(near the Accademia Museum on the San Trovaso canal). Zattere or Accademia vaporetto. Tel. 041/5230034. Open 8:30am-10:30pm. Closed Sun. Inexpensive. 

Rome (from Eating & Drinking in Rome: Italian Menu Translator and Restaurant Guide).

Enjoy outdoor and indoor dining at this trattoria on the charming Piazza Sforza Cesarini. Try the fettuccine alla Polese (fettuccine w/cream and mushrooms). Info: 40 Piazza Sforza Cesarini (off of Corso Vittorio Emanuele not too far from Piazza Navona). Tel. 06/6861709. Closed Tue. Moderate. Another trattoria on the same piazza at #24 is Da Luigi. Try the delicious penne alla vodka. Tel. 06/6865946. Closed Mon. Moderate. 

A little bit of everything at this deli, wine bar, and restaurant. At the deli you can choose from 300 types of cheese, 150 varieties of cold cuts, nearly 3,000 wine bottles, and a large selection of Italian food specialties. The restaurant, Ristorante Salumeria Roscioli, offers a huge selection of cheeses, meats, pastas, and main courses like the simple and delicious cacio e pepe (pasta with a sauce made of black pepper and pecorino cheese). Info: 21/22 Via dei Giubbonari. Tel. 06/6875287. Deli open Mon-Sat 8:30am-8:30pm. Restaurant open Mon-Sat 12:30pm-midnight. Both closed on Sunday. Roscioli also has wine tastings and cooking classes. Reserve at 

Vino Roma
This wine studio (in a sleek, modern space with a thousand-year-old cellar) is located in the heart of Rome near the Colosseum. Friendly English-speaking hosts guide you through wine tastings. The motto here is “We love drinking wine, but not being snobbish about it.” The most popular tasting is “My Italians” where you will taste six Italian wines from different wine regions of Italy (€50). Other options include wine and cheese tastings (€60), wine and dinner (price varies), and food tours. Info: 84/G Via in Selci (off of Via Giovanni Lanza). Be careful about the address as 84/G is seven doors down from 84 Via in Selci! Tel. 3284874497. Metro: Cavour. Reservations only at

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