As local Rome residents, prolific bloggers and active on social media, we are often approached by readers and followers seeking local insight and travel advice. Requests range from “Can you lend some Rome accommodation tips?”, or “Where can I find the best gluten free pizza in the Eternal City?” being the most common. We’d do the same: ask the locals for the best first hand info. We also greatly appreciate that people are asking us, and consider our opinions!
A few weeks ago I received one particular request from a reader that made me smile. A woman planning a “foodie vacation” asked me to point out the city’s best kitchen and home supplies. This was not your ordinary traveling gourmand, this was a foodie on a mission! Not only was she seeking the best Deruta, Solimene and Richard Ginori dishware sets, Bormioli mason jars for canning her tomatos, and all sizes of Parmigiano wedge cutters, this gal was after only the best vintage Napoletana coffee contraptions, Tuscan tinted glass, as well as more modern kitchenware, like silicone Bundt molds, Alessi gadgets and the latest cookery toys produced south of the Alps.
So I found myself compiling quite a list for her, and thought it would be helpful to share it with the rest of you roving food lovers looking for a little kitchen geekness in between Colosseum climbs and Vatican visits.
Here is my shortlist.
One of the first designer cookware stores to open 30 years ago in Rome was C.U.C.I.N.A. With four city-wide locations, C.U.C.I.N.A soon became famous for its white porcelain tableware, chrome scales and graters, olive wood chopping blocks, rustic woven baskets, and delightfully gleaming cooking utensils. Today it still markets that plus floor-to-ceiling shelves loaded with all sizes of pots, saucepans, Le Creuset beauties, cake molds, and flatware. Appliances include stand mixers, pasta machines and other nifty cookery gizmos. Both useful and elegant looking, every little kitchen tool doubles as a design piece: modern decanters, stainless steel corkscrew bottle openers, retro refrigerator magnets, smart storage solutions, reliable timers, professional blades, woven linen dish towels… it’s all there. Open Mon-Sat 10:00 a.m. – 7:30 p.m.
Via Mario dei Fiori 65 (Spanish Steps) – Via di Parione 31 (Navona) – Piazza Euclide 40 (Parioli) – Via Flaminia Vecchia 679 (Fleming)
I sourced most of last year’s Christmas gifts for my friends at DOM, centrally located 14,000 square feet of all things cookery at a stone’s throw from Piazza Venezia. Conveniently around the corner from the number 8 tram stop, DOM features blenders, vintage toasters, chromium-plated kitchen robots, nesting rainbow bowls, silicone spatulas… color and design are key. Besides the vast range of modern cooking implements, tools and cookery utensils, DOM is best known for its gift and home design department. Think sleek bento boxes, wall clocks, Technicolor trash bins, fun door stoppers, inventive coat hangers, big wall stickers and vintage decorations. Tailored objects and other cool interior design complements include original cell phone cases, amusing piggy banks, as well as lamps, throw pillows, folding chairs and rugs. The store often hosts events and cooking demonstrations, cake design workshops and product presentations. Open Mon-Sat 10:30 a.m. – 7:30 p.m. and Sun 11:00 a.m. – 7:30 a.m.
Via Aracoeli 6 (Piazza Venezia)
In the Prati neighborhood, very near the Vatican is another well-loved kitchen appliance and utensil resource. Peroni first started in the kitchen retail business in the 1950s but in time, and to serve a constantly growing community of cooks, the little shop became a go-to supplier for professional chef types. To meet the needs of a growing erudite and experienced clientele, Peroni opened a second store in 2011 dedicated entirely to pastry making and sale of specific foodstuffs and technical equipment for professional and recreational bakers. Both outlets showcase a large range of products. From stand mixers and blades, to pots and oven basics, including microwaves and related tools, bins and shopping carts, ironing boards, plus barbecue and picnic coolers and containers. Needless to say the entire bakery department is chock full with molds, thermometers and measuring cups, cookie cutters, rolling pins, cake decorating accessories and other sweet tools.
Piazza dell’Unità 29 (Kitchen supplies) – Piazza dell’Unità 16/17 (Bakery supplies)
The wee Kitchen Kiosk wedged in between a traffic light and the Ara Pacis Museum may seem minute, but it’s packed to the rafters with a vast assortment of baking and kitchen tools, utensils, appliances and gadgets. This is the place to find all your bread, pizza, pasta and dessert making materials; some of the best blades and renown knife brands; crockery of all sorts and materials, ranging from stainless steel and treated aluminum, to nonstick, pyrex and stone, to copper, cast iron and earthenware. There are toys and gadgets for mixology and barista pros, plus sommelier accessories; perfect table setting items; storage and food storing solutions; as well as oven tools and vessels. It’s a mixed crowd of customers at the kiosk: cuisine aficionados, expert housewives, hotel management students, cooking school teachers, certified chefs, bakers, home cooks and restaurateurs alike. Half a block down the road the Kitchen kiosk opened a larger bakery department. Open Monday 2.30 p.m. to 7.30 p.m.; Tues–Fri 9.30 a.m. to 1.30 p.m. and 2.30 p.m. to 7.30 p.m.; Saturday 9.30 a.m. to 1.00 p.m. and 3.30 p.m. to 7.30 p.m.
Viale degli Ammiragli 10 (Kitchen supplies) – Via degli Ammiragli 22 (Bakery supplies)
The list of top 5 kitchen supply stores in Rome could not be complete without one of Rome’s most famous registry stores and kitchen/home supply resources: Ditta Leone Limentani, located in the ancient Jewish Ghetto. This historic retail warehouse and cavernous labyrinth of high-piled crockery and kitchenware, sells gorgeous new and vintage porcelains, dishware, kitchen and home accessories, wedding registry items and high-end restaurant supplies. Keep eyes open, as many big name brands are often reduced by up to 20% at bargain prices, and may include items by Berkel, Villeroy & Boch, Alessi, Wedgewood, Richard Ginori, Aeterna, Artemide, Lalique, Baccarat, Bialetti, Sèvres, Cuisinart, Kitchen Aid, Foppa Pedretti, Hermès, Lagostina, Krups, Riedel, Rosenthal… the list goes on. Nice on-site cooking lessons and the possibility of buying gift cards. Open Mon-Sat 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. and 4:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.
Via del Portico D’Ottavia 47 (Jewish Ghetto).
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