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December 16, 2018 | Rome, Italy
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Agata e Romeo

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Via Carlo Alberto, 45
Rome, IT-RM 185 Italy
06.446.6115 http://www.agataeromeo.it

Husband-and-wife Agata Parisella and Romeo Caraccio run a tight ship. This is Rome nouvelle cuisine at its finest. Here’s some of it in English to avoid cutesy-long Italian descriptions: rabbit croquettes, stewed oxtail with celery, medallions of tuna coated with sesame seeds, and Islandic baccalà (cod). For desert, chocolate concoctions galore. The duplex setting is refined, the service gracious, the overall quality of food and presentation outstanding. So where’s the beef? Price. When a tasting menu tops €100 it severs the link between upscale tasteful and outrageous. Here, it’s €125 and climbing. Go à la carte and you can spend €150-200 a head. Agata has written cookbooks and talked food on TV. That’s great, but it also adds a branding factor and cranks up the prices further. It’s admittedly a tough call — the Roman variation food’s so good and inventive — but these people need to rein it in a bit, at the risk of becoming examples of a 21st century boutique restaurant that caters only to the rich, shocking and awing all the rest. Bear in mind it closes down from mid-August to around Sept. 10.

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