If there's one region of Italy that represents what much of the rest of the world considers Italian food it's Lazio.
Many of the most famous pasta dishes such as amatriciana and carbonara are claimed by Lazio residents as their own. Lazio is the region of the capital city, Rome, and much of the area is given over to agriculture to support the hungry metropolis. The rich volcanic soils provide vegetables of extremely high quality, from artichokes and beans to broccoli.
The province of Ciociaria to the south east is renowned for its high quality produce, which visitors to Rome can explore and sample in the daily market at Campo dei Fiori. Also within Rome, the Trastevere district is a must-visit for anyone who wants to experience true Roman and Lazio cuisine, with many restaurants specialising in the cucina povera style of turning simple ingredients into exceptional meals.
Expect to find Roman classics including saltimbocca and various takes on fritto misto, with offal and other unfashionable cuts of meat featuring heavily, often flavoured with assertive herbs such as mint and sage. Lazio wines are mainly white, grown in the Castelli Romani hills to the south and east. Frascati is the best known type, but Orvieto and Marino can also be enjoyed, along with rarer reds such as Cerveteri Rosso made from sangiovese grapes. One winery worth a visit is Principe Pallavicini near Castelli Romani, whose cellars contain remnants of a Roman aqueduct which visitors are welcome to explore on their way to a tasting of both the excellent wines and olive oils.