Looking for food near the Vatican... that's quick, cheap, and delicious? Although eating in the Vatican food desert neighborhood can be tough, it just got a lot easier, thanks to Mangia!—a stylish new sandwich shop that uses organic and Slow Food ingredients.
Oh, and Bonci bread. More on that in a minute.
Mangia! opened three weeks ago. The owner, Simona Palmisano, is a friend of mine; she's also a born-and-bred Roman with a discerning palate and a passion for supporting Slow Food and artisanal producers. (Not to mention an eye for detail. I love the way she wraps each panino, below!).
So it's no surprise that, when it comes to sourcing the products in her store (which include not only the panini ingredients, but also individual jams, pastas, wine, and beer), Simona has been pretty choosy. "I hand-picked each of the producers, choosing them because they've won Slow Food awards, use only organic ingredients, or because they do things in the old, traditional style," she told me.
The porchetta and prosciutto come from Marino Norcino Bernabei, where all the meats are organic, without any preservatives, and Slow Food. The mozzarella di bufala comes from Paestum's Rivabianca, an award-winning small producer that food magazine Scatti di Gusto dubbed the best mozzarella-maker in the region.