But Romans don't seem to care for snails anymore. Or liver and sweet caramelized onions. Or noodle soup with delicate hunks of tough-to-clean skate. Or many of the staple ingredients that once made Roman cuisine distinct. The city's trinity of traditional dining venues—the elegant ristorante, the rustic trattoria, and the bare-bones osteria—now competes with French bistros, gastropubs, all-you-can-eat promotions, fast-food chains, and an alarming number of mediocre burger joints offering plenty of variety but little substance. A proper Roman dinner once followed a prescribed ritual, a timeless pattern—the antipasto, the primo, the secondo, the contorno, and the dolce—and meals were long, wine-fueled events, portions were manageable, and when you booked a table it was yours for the night. Now, on the increasingly rare occasions when Romans go out for traditional fare, they eat fewer courses, drink less wine, and spend less time at the table. Trattoria owners are obliged to adapt or perish. Restaurants now serve super-sized pasta portions, they turn tables, and, thanks to the E.U.'s globalized food system, dishes often aren't made with the fresh, local ingredients that defined the flavors of the past.