Romans sure know a bit about wine – after all, they’ve been getting sozzled on the stuff for almost 3,000 years. And, with some of the most pleasant grape stops you’ll ever spot, the Eternal City remains a must-visit for any true oenophile. So go on wine-ers, get your gargle on at these bellissimo vin-centric bars.
Enoteca al Parlamento
Best for: Handsome secret cellar setting
Politicos, power brokers, old boots and young suits hide out in this woody, leather-chair drinking den tucked in the back of a bottle shop. Sigh as you sit, wave for a bold Barolo, and pair it with revamped cucina Romana dishes like cacio e pepe ravioli in an espresso and bacon consommè. Si, Signore!
Via dei Prefetti, 15, Ara Pacis, Rome. +39 06 687 3446. enotecalparlamento.com
Best for: Off-the-beaten-path terraza tipples
You’ll need to take a taxi out to upmarket ‘burb Monteverde Vecchio, but the cutesy Astroturf courtyard, biodynamic blends and largely Lazio-sourced bites at this chicly casj all-dayer are certainly worth the schlep.
Via Fratelli Bonnet, 5, Monteverde Vecchio. +39 06 4544 7639. vinerialitro.it
Ai Tre Scalini
Best for: Dram and ‘gram
You’ll be hard pressed to find a more Insta-worthy locale than this rustic-cosy centenarian with craggly cobblestones and a thick curtain of ivy out front. Nestled in the now hipsterfied hood of Monti, she kicks off around aperitivo hour when a young, creative crowd packs in for Italian vintages, acoustic tunes and a strong selection of classic chalkboard bites. Mwah!
Via Panisperna, 251, Monti, Rome. +39 06 4890 7495. colosseoorg.wix.com
Best for: Living la vida local
Regulars often spill out into the street at this tiny fuss-free hang specialising in small vineyard labels from Sicily to Venice, plus a few French picks. Ask owner Sergio for whatever he’s drinking and pair with something from the small selection of snacky cold cuts and salads. Simple and fab.
Via dei Banchi Vecchi, 14, Campo dei Fiori, Rome. +39 06 686 4268, facebook: @ilgoccetto
Best for: Sophisti-plates
By day it’s a cheese, salami and vino shop, but come sunset this humble deli transforms into an elbow-to-nip fave for rare and regional drops matched with contempo produce-driven fine fare. Expect a punchy Pugliese burrata and bottarga rigatoni in a yuzu butter and Cabras fish egg sauce. Don’t be fooled by the basic counter and cafe seats – cheap, she ain’t.
Via dei Giubbonari, 21, Campo dei Fiori, Rome. +39 06 687 5287. salumeriaroscioli.com
Best for: Sipping while shopping
Sure, it’s more store than bar, but you can still sample the exclusively all-natural range of varietals in this Trastevere nabey nook, where bottles are stacked along every shelf and barrels serve as tables. Just let owner Antonio know your preference and he’ll uncork a surprising pour to nose and nurse as he talks you through other take-home options.
Via Goffredo Mameli, 61, Trastevere, Rome. +39 06 6477 1439.
Worked up an appetite? Sample vino and tidbits with an expert sommelier on Context Travel’s excellent Rome Wine Tour.
For more insider insight into Rome, nab a LUXE Rome Guide.