Our dining splurge in Rome was spent on New Year’s Eve dinner at Glass Hostaria. It was a lovely experience. We sat down around 8:30 and they managed to pace the courses smoothly until midnight. We chose Glass because they served cotechino and lentils at midnight one of two Italian New Year’s traditions that we participated in. The other is wearing red underwear. The food was complex but good and we left satisfied with mini panettones for breakfast.
Before I dive into the photos of food I wanted to mention this article in the NY Times, “Restaurants Turn Camera Shy” about people taking photos of food. It was rather amusing. I love the idea of people standing on their chairs to get a good shot. I also enjoy that there’s a class on how to take good pictures of your food. If there’s a whole class devoted to it, it must be popular.
Amuse-bouche. When I saw other diners receiving this plate I couldn’t wait to get ours.
First course: Potato velouté, white chocolate, fresh cilantro, asetra caviar and leeks. It was a smooth welcome that got us excited for the rest of the meal.
Second course: scallops, prosciutto consommé, yams, mushrooms and tobiko. Strange on paper but good on your taste buds.
Third course: Liquid 60 months aged Parmesan cheese ravioli with hazelnuts. Thank you!
Fourth course: celery root gnocchi, pinenuts, caramelized onions consommé, black cardamom, foie gras. Floating blobs in liquid but great combo once you eat it.
Fifth course: Squab, berry gastrique, polenta and sunflower seeds. Mmmmmmmm
Petits fours. They gave us two of each. After I ate mine I remembered to take a photo.
Cotechino and lentils. A tradition that I agree with!
Our quiet, delicious meal was nothing like the party happening on the streets. A few minutes before midnight some of the other diners grabbed their glasses of champagne and headed outside. I was happy to stay inside when I saw someone light a firework about 3 feet from the front door of the restaurant. Bf mentioned how there are always firework related accidents and deaths on New Year’s in Italy and I wasn’t ready to deal with that. I would get a serving of the mayhem when we left the restaurant and walked back to our hotel.
The mass of people on the street near Via dei Fori Imperiali was amazing. The city had set up a stage for performances and apparently a couple hundred thousand people showed up. I did not love the people who were lighting fireworks in the middle of crowds. The air was filled with smoke. I’ve never experienced anything like it. Part of me was nervouse but the other part of me was excited. There were cops here and there but just managing traffic. I did love the overflowing trash cans and empty wine and champagne bottles lined up neatly near them. Everyone was in good spirits and no one got hurt that I saw. It was a fun evening.