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Eating Italy, on a Budget

When I was deciding on studying abroad in Italy, one of the first things that drew me to the boot was its cuisine. Although it definitely has not disappointed thus far, going out every night for some local Italian eats can be a little expensive. Luckily, some of my favorite spots are well within budget and are more delicious than I can even begin to describe.
 The most delicious gelato Rome has to offer

Let's start with Italy's specialty and my favorite: GELATO!

The best gelato I have stumbled upon is at La Romana. Convenient for my bank account, but dangerous for my waist line, La Romana is located only a couple of blocks over from my apartment (on Cola di Rienzo) and is only 2.50€ for three scoops. My go to flavors are Nutella, biscotto della gonna (grandma's cookies), and stracciatella (chocolate chip). But let's not forget what separates La Romana from the competition...they fill the bottom of your cone with either chocolate or white chocolate syrup and top it with homemade whipped cream. *drooling* It's incredible.

 Chocolate spouts of heaven

Now, what's Italy without a little prosciutto and mozzarella?

My favorite place to grab a panini is at this little shop across the street from school. I'm not exactly sure what the name is, but it's next to Paninieria! This one was suggested by CEA because not only is it so close to the campus center, but it is so cheap and tasty! I've never paid more than 3€ for a sandwich and they are HUGE! You pick the type of bread you'd like and they slice it fresh, nice and thick. Then you pick your choice of meat(s) and cheese. All sliced fresh at the time you order. Each element is weighed and the total weight of your sandwich correlates with its price. My go-to is prosciutto crudo and fresh mozzarella between thickly sliced bread. It's my favorite lunch to grab between classes.

 Assorted meats to choose from

Since we’ve saved so much on gelato and lunch, I think it's only fair to splurge a little for supper...while still keeping it reasonable.

Hosteria del Moro, aka Tony’s, definitely fits the bill! For 20€, Tony's offers a special deal, unlimited food and wine. I repeat, UNLIMITED FOOD AND  WINE! Do I need to say more? It is an amazing deal and the perfect place to go with a big group of friends. The first time I went there, as soon as my friends and I sat down, we were bombarded with at least eight plates of appetizers. A few bottles of wine and plates of various apps later, we were presented with three different kinds of pasta and chicken parm, and then for dessert, tiramisu. Everything is simply amazing! I would not say Tony's special deal is the most authentic Italian meal...considering chicken parm isn't really a thing in Italy, but the remaining menu is full of Italian favorites. The environment and staff are so welcoming and make you feel at home. I would definitely recommend a night at Tony's to anyone traveling to Rome. It is absolutely delicious!

 A few of the appetizers at Tony's

I love the feeling of calling places in Rome my favorite and being able to recommend them to others. It makes my host city feel more like my home, my city, to share with others. I can't wait to stumble upon new restaurants and holes in the wall throughout my remaining time in this truly amazing city!

Courtney Blanchard is the Fall 2015 CEA MOJO in Rome, Italy. She is currently a senior at Stockton University.


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