San Calisto is perhaps the least pretentious bar in Trastevere, and the most lovable. People totally love this place. They feel some kinda bond with it; maybe because, like the truest form of love, it’s unconditional - San Calisto doesn’t demand anything of you, not even much of your wallet (small beers cost €1.50).
This bar dates back to the 50's, so what you think may be retro styling is in fact just because it’s really that old and has never moved on, despite generations of drinkers passing through. The senior cashier has been working here since about 1957. Respect.
Order a beer and watch as the guys pull it out from the ancient steel refrigeration units behind the stainless steel bar. The walls inside are covered in framed photographs of 1970s Roma football teams and other black and white characters.
The crowd seated or standing outside are raffish student types, the odd hobo, a solitary writer, and a handful of internationals, particularly the French who seem to get “San Ca’s” bustling, poetic bonhomie. As for us, we just get the rum shot with a pear juice chaser to sharpen up before hitting the road.