BonAppetour Review: Dine with Locals in a Home Restaurant

BonAppetour is our new favourite company: BonAppetour helps travellers find delicious home-cooked meals and local foods served by the world's best home chefs. Think of it as an Airbnb for the food world: head over to a local's home for a delicious, authentic lunch or dinner. This is especially important in Rome. Everyone knows how amazing Italian food is, but many are disappointed by the quality of the restaurants in Rome - it's infamous for selling substandard pizzas and pastas at high prices to unsuspecting tourists. But that's where BonAppetour comes in: their chefs are tried and tested, and will make your holiday food experience special and memorable. We tried BonAppetour in Rome and this is what we thought:

1. Trying the BonAppetour Website

To connect travellers and holidaymakers with local home chefs, BonAppetour has a great website. Here you can browse for locals and find your perfect meal. Signing up is quick and easy, and then you're ready to search by location and date. We searched in Rome and found over 100 lunches, cooking classes and dining experiences. We were impressed that most of the hosts were verified - meaning that they'd been trialled and tested by BonAppetour themselves - no substandard meals here! We also liked the map feature on the right hand side, so if you had a particular area in mind (say, right next to your hotel), you could pick one that was suitable. Alternatively, if you liked the look of one of the chefs on the left hand side, hovering over them would reveal where they were in the city. Very useful.

There were many other filters too: cuisine preference (please go for Italian when you're in Rome!), venue type, experience type (cooking class, dinner etc), dietary preference, price and instant confirmation - Like Airbnb, instant confirmation means that you can book their experience then and there, without waiting to hear back from them, useful if you don't want to keep dancing back and forth. Another great thing about the BonAppetour website is that you can actually contact the hosts before booking - this way you can check if they are free for your dates or can adjust their meal slightly to your needs etc. This is a really important feature, and saves you booking and then having to rebook if your dates don't match/some other reason.

We used the vegan filter and found Alessandro (who also happened to be in the number one spot when you searched for Rome, vegan or not)! It turned out that Alessandro was actually a professional chef! All in all, the BonAppetour website is extremely easy to use and very clear. I liked how similar it was to the Airbnb website. I couldn't find any downsides to it at all!

2. Dining with locals in a Home Restaurant in Rome

We followed Alessandro's instructions and found their home easily. We met Alessandro, his girlfriend Elena, and an extra guest - Emily. They were all really lovely! Alessandro showed us the outside dining area (for summer use) and their lemon tree!! I love lemons, so this was super cool, and even better when he explained they'd made home-made limoncello from it and we'd be able to try some later! We then went inside, and were happy to see a menu - I don't know about you, but I love knowing exactly what my meal is called. Alessandro is a professional chef and a sommelier so each course of the five course meal was spectacular, and all authentically Roman!


Our evening started with a very traditional Italian starter: Bruschetta. These are yummy toasts topped with olive oil, garlic, tomatoes and herbs. We've had these a few times in Italy, but Alessandro's were by far the best - it was so fresh! Our meal was paired with a delicious red wine - Italian (of course) and produced near Rome, right on the coast.

Orecchiette Coi Broccoli

Next came Orecchiette coi Broccoli: ear in Italian is orecchio, so this basically means 'ear pasta with broccoli' - because the pastas look like ears! The texture of the pasta was really great, and the broccoli was actually Romanesco broccoli - Roman broccoli! It was steamed making it really fresh and tasty.

Zuppa D' Legumi

After the pasta came my favourite savoury dish of the night: Zuppa D'Legumi or soup of legumes. This soup was so incredible! Chickpeas, herbs, lentils, carrots, tomatoes, celery, herbs - really delicious and healthy. Alessandro joked that he was our doctor as well as our chef (he wanted to make sure we had a good balance of protein and carbs)!

Insalata Di Cavoli

The penultimate dish was Insalata di Cavoli - cabbage salad. Alessandro described it as 'coleslaw' and I was scared (I hate coleslaw). BUT, like a magician, Alessandro not only made coleslaw bearable, but also delicious! I loved this dish! I guess I've never had nice coleslaw before. Thank you Alessandro for showing me the light.

Vegan Cake and Limoncello

Now anyone that knows us knows that I'm not the biggest fan of sweets (Tanbay has the sweet tooth, I love salty snacks). So I was surprised to find that the dessert was my favourite course - this is because it was so, so delicious! We had a vegan cake with vegan yoghurt. The yoghurt was purple because of the blackberries, and was super yummy. The cake, oh my how can I describe that cake? It was delectable!! We couldn't believe it didn't have eggs/butter/milk etc in it, it was so good! What it did have in it was orange, olive oil, sugar and a special flour used in the Roman times! So not only was it extremely delicious, it was also very authentic. The Limoncello was the best we'd ever tasted, we were so happy to have seen the tree the lemons came from.

3. Dining with Locals

Every single course was absolutely delicious, but it was made even better by the company we had that evening. Elena and Alessandro (who asked us to call him Tony, like his friends and family do), were such interesting and kind hosts!! They have such cool lives - they are following their passions and they have so many talents! Elena is a published author and writes horror books:

If you can read Italian please buy this book! We really loved that they have a blog together: FoodsAndFilm, which combines their two passions - cooking and watching horror films. Elena writes reviews of the films and Tony pairs recipes to go with the films - how cute is that! Emily (the other guest), was also lots of fun and really nice! She told us about her parent's love story, which is the second most romantic story I've ever heard (after ours of course ;) ). She was also a real Roman and had lots of cool tips for us.

Wrap Up: BonAppetour Review

As if our evening wasn't already perfect, Tony and Elena gave us a parting gift - a goody bag!! Is there anything better than having a delicious meal with kind locals? Having it for breakfast the next day as well of course! All in all, this was one of the best meals we've ever had, not just in Rome but in the entire world! Everything was delicious and the evening was so much fun. We love the concept of BonAppetour and will be henceforth trying home cooked meals everywhere we go :) Find out more on their website: and enjoy a 14 Euro voucher for BonAppetour! You can also find them on Viator. Make sure to follow them on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. And to find out more about world-wide adventures, follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook too. To find out more about BonAppetour, check out our vlog:

Disclaimer: Travelling Weasels were invited as guests of BonAppetour, but as always all opinions are our own. This was the highlight of our week in Rome and we hope it is for you too!

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We overland. We eat plants and fungi. We live outside as much as possible. We are all connected. A female travel blogger overlanding and writing about ecotourism, ethical and sustainable travel, socially conscious travel and housesitting. An online travel magazine since 2015.


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