I was looking forward to dining at Orso 80 when planning our visit to Rome this past week. I had heard such good things about it, especially the antipasti. We dined here two nights in a row, just to see if the first experience was just a fluke. It was not!
We were seated immediately then completely ignored by the two waiters working the area. We had to ask for menus, twice. We had to ask for water, then wine, both times. Other patrons came in after us and received menus, wine and water quickly. After flagging down one of the waiters, we ordered the house red wine and a split antipasti. That seemed to irritate him for some reason. Apparently each diner is supposed to order their own appetizer (€15 each) and also must select wines from their wine list which is pricey. You must understand that the appetizer consists of 11 separate dishes, brought to the table in a constant stream of food. Eggplant fixed 2 separate ways, celery with cheese, meatballs, prociutto with mellon and mozzarella, white beans in tomato broth, sliced fresh fennel, slices of quiche, and four more I cannot remember. This is food overload, and it is just the appetizer. Having seen such a gastronomic onslaught, we thought splitting one was reasonable. Not so. We continued to be ignored.
The waiter forgot our meal order and asked us again, twice! Getting the check was another exercise in arm-waving. It was very obvious that we had been classified as some sort of “second class” patron. While the food is quite good, the humiliation overrides any desire to return, nor recommend this place. In fact, there is a charming little restaurant just around the corner from Orso 80 (toward Piazza Navona) called the Old Bear where the people actually care about their customers and the food is honestly even better (and less expensive as well). In addition, there are three better choices within 100 yards of Orso 80. Save you money, time and retain some dignity by avoiding Orso 80.