Ristorante 4 Fiume

 Tel: +39 06 6864 028
Address: Piazza Navona, 37-38
Cuisine Type: Classic Italian
Closed: Open every day
Tables Outside? Yes

Piazza Navona is the most stunning space in Rome but that means it’s full of tourists, and full of restaurants trying to extract as much money from them as possible.  What a refreshing surprise therefore to find that at 4 Fiume (named for the extraordinary Bernini fountain of the four rivers, in the centre of the Piazza) the waiting staff are courteous, the food is good and the prices are rock bottom for current Rome.  OK, a bottle of Prosecco is still €30, but across the Piazza they have the gall to charge €49 – we could’t believe it.

We’d been so impressed with the friendliness of the place for a drink and a good session of people watching that we went back, and decided to risk the food.  It was quite a revelation for Piazza Navona.  A huge plate of bresaola, rucola and parmesan for €14?  The tenderest veal in lemon sauce for €15?  Stracchetti con Gorgonzola, also for €15?  Amazing value.  You can easily pay more in a back street, without the extraordinary view.  One niggle – a plate of spinach was actually quite expensive at €8, and although it was very good, it could have been hotter.

Antipasti range from €4 to €14, there are salads from €8 to €12, and a big range of pizze (€9-13).

The house white (€15) is a good Trebbiano, if you like your wine fruity, or there is a delicious Greco di Tufa for about the same price.

There is a very elegant inside room but let’s face it, you don’t come to Piazza Navona to eat inside (unlike the policeman who had been on duty in the Piazza, who I later saw tucking into a meal).  The staff couldn’t have been more helpful and seemed happy for diners – or just those having a drink – to stay as long as they liked to soak up the atmosphere.