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Wilden.herbals meets / An interview with Gastromario

A restaurant. No, a bistrot. No, a bakery and pasta lab. We welcome you to Gastromario, a multifunctional restaurant in Rome.

Sometimes finding yourself, in life as in love, means choosing yourself. Gastromario is a place in Rome born, like us at Wilden, from a series of choices: welcoming and understanding the customer by proposing exceptional raw materials and becoming storytellers.

We like to think that, for this series of reasons, our paths have intertwined: in their restaurant you can find our herbal teas and our herbal drinks, but even more a constantly evolving gastronomic proposal that starts from breakfast and ends at dinner.

We had a chat with one of the 3 founders, Simone Romano (maître d’ and wine), so that you can read their story from their perspective.

Pics from the Instagram account @gastromario.it

How did the Gastromario project come to be?

Gastromario is a gastronomic project born during the Covid period. After a series of haute cuisine experiences marked by the vision “food = experience”, Valentina De Caro (dessert and bread), Francesco D’agostino (kitchen) and myself, we decided to open a multifunctional restaurant inspired by the concept of the Parisian bistros.

The pandemic has changed our vision a lot, which is why we began to think of a place that would work in any situation, even in such a particularly delicate and insecure one. From there we moved towards the idea of a French bistro with an internal bakery and pasta laboratory, both basic necessities, enclosed in a place with precise know-how but with a democratic and accessible price, similar to that of a mid-range one.

We wanted to create an intimate and cozy place to guarantee quality products throughout the day.

What is your philosophy?

We put hospitality and listening to what the customer wants first. We don’t try to educate people: we think it might seem presumptuous at times. We prefer to tune in to the customer’s needs and satisfy them.

Yes, you can find a good cup of coffee for 1 euro but we make a wider offer, such as a meat, fish or vegetarian dish or a classic or French dessert. It is a constantly evolving philosophy based on demand.

How do you process fresh raw materials?

We start from a very careful research: we only want products if we can tell their story. They can be sought after or be found in large-scale distribution, in any case they have to have a strong personality and a precise identity with something to say, because we want to be able to transfer it to the customer.

How is your menu: do you change it often, do you always have fixed dishes or an iconic dish that identifies you?

The menu changes approximately every three weeks and is made up of 3 choices per type of course plus the daily off menus. Of each type we have a vegetarian proposal, one with meat and one with fish that change in rotation.

There are some dishes that are becoming cornerstones and that are in great demand, but we try not to get too attached to them. We prefer to change our dishes according to season, also to give our customer a novelty effect.

What do you think is the point of connection with Wilden?

Without a doubt, I think is the storytelling aspect. We both have a philosophy based on craftsmanship and the concept of beauty: we firmly believe in it, the world would not go on without a little beauty and character!

Wilden mirrors us a lot in this regard and managed to fill a void we had before meeting you.

What does being healthy and wild mean to you?

In my opinion it means having the awareness of choosing products with a certain philosophy and not having mental limits and preconceptions in trying things that are not known. You have to be totally free to rewrite the rules. Like why not have dinner with herbal tea? Or an aperitif with kombucha instead of the usual Spritz.