New in Rome: Spasso food to move


I'll say it straight away: Federico Iavicoli is a friend, a person from the world of food who I respect for his sensitivity and intelligence. He was one of the Bolasco's Boys, as I used to ironically define the group who in the years when Marco was curator of the Gambero Rosso's restaurant guide, supported him with enthusiasm and involvement. Federico has always convinced me with his gastronomic knowledge and passion. It strikes me after so many discussions about tradition, restaurant management, territory, to see him dressed as a chef, behind the counter of his new Roman establishment: Spasso.

The name is fun, just like the venue is tiny and smart: it faces one of Rome's main shopping avenues. The idea is simple like the name: a rosticceria (roasted good store), but well-finished and contemporary. Greedy and gastronomic dishes, to eat-out in well-thought and specifically designed containers, which are stain-proof.

The food proposal is varied and diverse: many revised classics, some fashionable dishes and a touch of smart-ass. The prices are right: you can get a meal for under 10 euro, which is not bad. Artisan beers and designer drinks are also available.

The shutter comes up at 10 and closes at 22: it's open non-stop to feed all those who come past, as well as hurrying little families. A home delivery service will begin in a few days, the real turning point for a place like this. The dishes I tasted at the presentation yesterday were good, home-made with that extra gastronomic touch, like the very cool comics graphics.

The potato gateau to take away is delicious, greedy and can be taken home for one euro fifty: great efficacy and satisfaction. The baby-leaf spinach salad with mango has that touch of Sex and the city that the thousands of neighbouring shops will appreciate: I can already imagine young ladies on a diet heading to Spasso's fun take-away to nibble on the delicate salad. The saltimbocca meatballs are more intense and bold, all the flavour of saltimbocca in a bite-sized format. The reassuring goulash served in a cup and the pumpkin soup with crusts and black cabbage crisps are the perfect comfort food for evenings spent on the sofa.

The full-view rotisserie of certified provenance chickens is perfect for the neighbourhood's families that don't want to cook. So Spasso is a nice and interesting little place, despite the usual rhetoric of the habitual names and fashionable suppliers.

Good luck Federico!


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