After wrapping things up at the dialysis clinic, including a marathon session with three staff members trying to figure out how to process a credit card, we headed back to the Minerva to pack. It’s amazing how quickly are stay here has gone. The Minerva has been wonderful – unbeatable location, great staff, fantastic room, a couple of nice nights on the roof top with views over all of Rome. We would recommend it to anyone.
We finished packing and headed out for a light lunch. We strolled to one of the streets that heads to the Piazza Navonna that we go down on our return from dialysis. It has several small restaurants on it that look nice, so we decided to check them out. After passing on the first couple of spots (one turned out to be a gelataria, another a coffee bar) we perused the menu at a third, and took a table on the street. Our waitress was delightful, recommending wines and specials. David ordered a bottle of Vermentino, and we settled on appetizers of Bresaola, which turned out to be among the freshest we have had so far. I got a text from Darren that they were returning from sightseeing and shopping and told him where we were. He said they would join us shortly.
We polished off the Bresaola and a glass or two of wine, and Darren and Misha showed up and joined us. David’s main plate was veal scaloppini with lemon and white wine, which he said was excellent. I had pasta with Amatriciana sauce, which also was very good. Darren and Misha gave raves to their orders as well.
As is often the case, we went from being the only folks outside to drawing in several other tables, ending up with four or five other tables. The waitress and manager were happy that we were attracting business for them and sent over a few “thank yous,” such as. We think that people are reluctant to dine at a place where all the seats are empty, so when we take a visible table it helps them get business. David calls it the “Bev effect.” Then, they came up to us and gave us a business card with a note on it, essentially a free bottle of Prosecco if we would come back for dinner and sit outside to help draw people in. Every time we would ask for the bill and try to leave, another freebie would show up until we finally left, saying we would be back – which we would have if we were staying longer.
We finished our packing and met Darren and Misha on the rooftop for wine and some light snacks. We were still a bit full from lunch. The views from the roof were terrific, Rome lit up in all directions from the Victor Emmanuel to St. Peters. A piano player inside the rooftop lounge provided some nice sounds for our enjoyment, then it was time to turn in. All-in-all, a delightful end to a wonderful stay. It meant a lot for David to be in Rome with Darren, who made things enjoyable with his sense of humor and incredible knowledge of all that is Rome. It would be nice to come back again with him, if circumstances allow – who knows?