The American initiative, already weighed down by an appeal, would only cover restaurant chains. But the Ristorante Romani, which voluntarily decided to list just how many calories the risotto alla milanese packs is an upscale, family-run venue in the city’s historic center.
“It’s a question of transparency and propriety,” owner Maria Ciaramella told newspapers. “It’s also the best way to meet the needs of our customers — both men and women — who will soon have to face the dreaded swimsuit test.”
To do it right, the restaurant brought in Italian dietitian to the stars Nicola Sorrentino. His outside expertise means there will be no flubbing on exactly how much the tortelloni with scampi, figs served with a “cascade of flowers” (edible? do those count as carbs or protein?) may bulge from your bikini.
Other items under scrutiny include linguini with lobster and cherry tomatoes, risotto alla pescatora and Chateaubriand with potatoes. It’s hard to imagine the truly diet-conscious even glancing at dessert items such as tiramisu, torta della nonna and the house specialty, a killer Neopolitan ricotta cake (pastiera alla napoletana).
With prices hovering around 45 euro a head ($70) sans vino, I haven’t been there since the dot-com boomlet allowed me to entertain clients on the company tab, but have heard that last year’s slight makeover has made the place even more comfortably old-school than it was.
Image courtesy Ristorante Romani.