Food is Memories, Family, Tradition, History
Benvenuti to "al Sospiro" Trattoria Romana
Our cooking style is authentic Roman/Italian, prepared with seasonal, fresh ingredients, garden herbs and vegetables true to the “slow food” of the Mediterranean diet.
Our sauces are made from scratch using imported Italian ingredients.
We use either fresh homemade pasta or only the best Italian imported dried durum wheat products and is always cooked to order, al dente, never pre-cooked!
Our soups are made from scratch and they are only naturally vegetable based; no additives, no stock, no bouillon.
We only use imported Italian Extra Virgin olive oil for our dressings and cooking, and peanut oil for deep frying; no butter, no other vegetable oil or transfats.
Our meats are first grade and our fish very fresh, wild caught, sustainable when possible, and never farm raised or color added.
Our vegetables are first choice, organic and locally grown according to seasonal availability.
Our dishes are fairly simple, usually with no more than a couple of ingredients, allowing the main ingredient to stand out.
We offer daily specials, including vegetables, meats and fish, reflecting fresh seasonal items available on the market.
The name “Sospiro” meaning “sigh!” in Italian, takes its origin from XVI Century Rome, when Pope Sistus V was the first institution to establish the monopoly and the tax on the sale of wine in the Eternal City. So, for the first time in ancient Rome, wine had to be sold in specified different sizes from “tubo” – the equivalent of a liter – to “fojetta” – half a liter – and so on. The smallest size available, the cheapest and therefore the most popular, was given the name “sospiro” – one tenth of a liter, the size of today’s shot. The quantity was so small that after people drank it they would “sigh” wishing for more! We want to honor ancient Rome and its anecdotes calling our Trattoria and our wine serving size with the same name: "Sospiro".
We also are honored to give tribute to our dear Roman friend and poet Stefano Ambrosi - aka “Zac” - with the following poem written by him in Roman dialect and dedicated to all the mothers in the world. The poem basically tells the story of a mother preparing her best dishes for her son that has moved on to live on his own, but the son keeps going back home to Mom’s for a very special spread of his homemade favorites.
We hope you enjoy your dining experience at “al Sospiro”.
A casa de Mamma
Io ciò mi madre ch’è Trasteverina
e so’ abituato a cibbi caserecci,
pure quanno che fà ‘na minestrina,
è tutto meno ‘n piatto da poracci.
“Bello de mamma ho fatto pasta e ceci,
appresso sart’in bocca a la romana,
du’ puntarelle bone co’ l’alici
e ciò ‘n vinello ch’ è un toccasana.”
- A Ma’ da te c’è sempre l’abbondanza
e chiunque ce farebbe tappa fissa,
ma peso ottantaquattro, ciò la panza
e nun è certo l’aria che me ‘ngrassa -.
Me metto a sede, m’armo de forchetta,
come si me volessi da difenne,
però ‘na tièlla è piena de bruschetta
e la difesa allora me s’arenne.
Riempio ‘r bicchiere, manno giù ‘n goccetto
e mentre magno faccio certi assoli,
è maleducazione si l’ammetto,
e ancora ‘n ho toccato li facioli.
“So in umido, la vòi na sarciccetta?”.
- ‘n anticchia Ma’ che ‘n centra già più gnente -!
Poi come m’avesse toccato un dente,
m’attacco ar pane e faccio la scarpetta.
- Stò bene a casa a Ma’, ma qui stò mejo,
scordo li guai e la vita c’accortella -
“ Huu!!... me stavo a scordà…tu pensa fijo,
si vòi ciò pure un po’ de….coratella?”.
Stefano Ambrosi aka Zac
Chef & Owner
Pe' condi bene l'insalata ce vonno quattro persone:
un sapiente pe mettece er sale,
un avaro l'aceto,
uno sprecone l'ojo
e un matto che la mischi e la smucini.