Hungry and on a budget. That’s what I was when I came to Rome as a student in 1999. But back then, my lira went a whole lot farther than today’s euro. With this in mind, Parla Food is launching a “Rome on a Budget” series with the help of two University of California interns, Adrienne Foley and Alston Wen. The first installment comes from Miss Foley, who visited Er Buchetto near Stazione Termini for a taste of their accessible and satisfying porchetta. Adrienne and Alston will also be organizing affordable dining and drinking events for students this fall. Details soon…in the meantime, here’s Adrienne:

“One afternoon last week, I hopped on the H bus after class and headed towards Termini for a highly-anticipated pork-filled lunch. Er Buchetto is a hole in the wall in the best sense of the phrase, but easy to miss. I walked the length of Via Del Viminale three times before realizing the small green banner I had walked past marked my lunch destination.

Upon entering, I was warmly greeted by a knife-wielding man slicing pork. I awkwardly stood in the middle of the small eatery surrounded by locals and tourists alike, and after waiting a few moments, he turned his attention away from the porchetta and blade to take my order: “panino con porchetta”, a roast pork sandwich.

The seating in Er Buchetto is minimal, and communal. I snagged a seat next to a nice German couple, and was immediately offered a glass of red or white wine; I chose white. It took less than a minute to be served my sandwich.

I took my first couple of bites, but was disappointed that the crusty bread overshadowed the porchetta. I took a cue from the couple seated next to me; they were eating porchetta on its own, without bread. The pork on its own, punctuated with crisyp cracklings, melt-in-your-mouth fat, and herb-studded veins, was a thing of beauty. I immediately ordered some sliced porchetta to take away to share with my roomates.

Er Buchetto was extremely affordable, ideal for student budgets. My bill for a porchetta sandwich and a glass of wine was just €4.50 (the panino was €3). The location is prime–just a short walk from Termini and many bus stops–and dining style is flexible; one can eat in or take out.

As an added bonus, this is one of the few places in Rome where the server did not immediately speak to me in English (hence, great practice for my Italian!). In all, Er Buchetto was a tasty, porky delight.”

Er Buchetto di Alessandro Fioravanti
Via Del Viminale, 2F
Tel. +39064883031
www.erbuchetto.it

Photo credit: Adrienne Foley

Explore related categories:
Food & Wine · Guest Post · Pork · Restaurants · Rome & Lazio · Rome on a Budget

9 Comments:


  • Adrienne, we need a photo of that elusive entrance!


  • Hi Adrienne. Loved reading about your adventures in Roma. UC EAP sent us the link and it is wonderful to see a UC San Diego student taking advantage of great opportunities abroad.Cioa! Sarah


  • Excellent timing. I work for UCSD and will be in Rome on October 30th. This place has been added to my restaurant list with the notes: “green banner” and “PORK!”


  • I call here often on my way to and from San Lorenzo (or at least I did before I Porchettoni opened there). I agree very good pork let down a little by the standard of the bread but worth €3 of anyone’s money. There’s a picture of the entrance here: http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3114/3123847504_50537478a5.jpg.

    Incidentally, I think this is the place described in Michael Dibdin’s Aurelio Zen novel ‘And then you die’.


  • San Diego represent! It is good you are experiencing Rome’s food. Just know that when are craving a San Diego taco, you are not alone. Have fun in Rome!


  • Thank you so much for this wonderful tip! I am living in Rome for one year and try to find new great places to eat and this place is great! The place is also very close to the opera house and i am looking forward to eat here before my next opera visit :-)


  • Here’s a few budget tips, First, two in San Lorenzo: Pizza L’Economica Forno a Legno (Tiburtina 44), just round the corner from the over-rated and over-popular Formula Uno, a true San Lorenzo place. Good, if not outstanding, thin crust pizze and decent antipasti (porchetta, ‘il contadino’ – roast peppers and onions etc). Peroni beer, absolutely appalling wine. Very much a local families place. Pizza from €5 euro up. Being given an English menu here is about as likely as hearing one of the customers extol Lazio. I don’t go here as often as I used to only because now my heart belongs to Remo.
    Then there’s Osteria Da Marcello (corner of Messapi and Campani). Also a Roma hotbed. Cucina Romana classics (including tripa, pajata etc) at moderate prices, a full meal with wine can be had for less than €25, pasta alone for less than €10. I was intending to be in NYC for ten days from tomorrow but events prevent me, so it’s San Lorenzo instead and Marcello’s will be my first port of call (after the Bar dei Brutti on Volsci). Just around the corner from where Dandi was supposed to live in ‘Romanzo Criminale 2′. Avoid Trattoria Genni across the road from here, I asked for scallopine and they served me pork. God only knows how Dandi would have reacted to that.

    Elsewhere there’s the ‘€4 pasta place’ on Croce, it was €5 last time I went but that’s still cracking good value for a lunch. More details here: http://www.revealedrome.com/2011/01/pasta-for-4-euros-pastificio-spanish-steps-rome.html.

    And let’s not forget Alfredo e Ada (Banchi Nuovi 14), take a trip back in time to the Rome of the 1950s. Just far enough from the tourist traps like Da Baffetto to remain uncorrupted. There isn’t even a written menu here let alone one in English. Weekday evenings only.

  • Katie

    excellent! thanks for that. One of the Parla Food interns has written a piece about the pastateca on via della croce. it will be published soon. i need to eat in san lorenzo more!


  • The porchetta is something tipycal from Rome, in particular from the Castelli (Roman conutryside),it’s not too expensive and is too good!

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