In a nutshell:
Located in a ‘happening’ mall, this restaurant with a nice ambience serves average Italian food with few exceptions.
Address & other details: Italia
Meal for 2: Rs. 1000 onwards
Cuisine type : Vegetarian & Nonvegetarian
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Short Description – in case u r in a hurry:
Since we pay for all our restaurant eat outs, we tend to go to places that someone we know has recommended or some renowned food critic has written good things about. Eating out at Italia was an exception. We were hungry in Promenade mall & decide to go in here for a bite…………… & that turned out to be a bad decision. Money not well spent.
The restaurant is tastefully done. As u enter. On the right there is a beautiful bar area. On the left there is a indoor dining hall with wooden furniture, large mirrors on the wall & a beautiful old style ceiling. On one end of the dining hall there is a smart wine cellar.
Beyond the dining hall there is a cool outdoor seating as well.
Service is good but overbearing. People irritatingly hover all around u & give a feeling of being watched all the time. I am not sure if this is the case round the clock but it was surely the case in the early evening when we were there.
Food was surely not the star of the show but décor & ambience was. Food was OK OK in general & at times good.
Detailed Description – In case u have the Time to NJOY reading:
We started the meal with bruschetta de pomodoro e mozzarella. The base of the bruschetta (open sandwich) was slices of baguette (a long thin loaf of French bread distinguishable by its length and crisp crust). It was topped with finely chopped square shaped tomatoes (pomodoro), onions, mozzarella cheese & pesto. This vegetarian dish was so good that it deeply impressed a hardcore carnivore like me.
The base was perfectly done, crispy & with the right amount of olive oil, the tomatoes were not soggy, not too dry but just perfect, the mozzarella was molten & the pesto sauce was perfect in flavors & added a zing to the taste. Very good & I rate this at 4.5/5.
For maincourse we had ‘Salmone norvegese con caponata de verdure e salsa verde’ meaning Norwegian salmon with caponata of vegetables & salsa verde. For the uninitiated, Caponata is a Sicilian aubergine (eggplant) dish consisting of a cooked vegetable salad made from chopped fried eggplant and celery seasoned with sweetened vinegar, with capers in a sweet and sour sauce. Numerous local variations of the ingredients exist with some versions adding olives, carrots and green bell peppers, and others adding potatoes, or pine nuts and raisins.
The version at Italia had aubergines, bell pepper, olives, onion & tomatoes. ‘Salsa Verde’ literally meaning ‘green sauce’ was served ornamentally on the plate.
The salmon fillet was ‘well done’ without asking us for a choice. The fillet had an outer skin, it was flaky, but had no fatty layers within them & thus turned out to be a bit dry & chewy. That meant the fillet was not juicy, not soft, tad dry. The fish itself was good, taste was good but the texture killed it. I wud give the fillet a 3/5.
The salsa verde cud not impress me at all. The caponata was very sour (beyond enjoyable limit). The bell peppers had almost gone into ‘lauki’ like soft consistency. Overall taste was definitely sub optimal. I wud give the caponata 1/5.
Will never dare to try this dish again if I ever dare to go to this restaurant again. Rating for the overall dish adds up to 2/5.
Next dish was ‘Filleto di sanpietro con spinachi cremosi et emulzioni di olio di olive balsamico’ – In easy English that refers to Fillet of John Dory (fish) with creamy spinach & balsamic olive oil emulsion. The john Dory fillet was a real long one & it was something that those with an exposure to Global food & those with predominantly Indian taste will appreciate alike. The fillet was soft & juicy within & had mild browning effect on the top. Being John Dory, it was superbly good to taste.
The bed of creamy spinach was very enjoyable. It was not made into a paste & hence tasted good – we cud feel the texture, flavors & taste of the leaf. The balsamic olive oil emulsion did not make much of a contribution to this dish but was not bad either. Loved the dish & wud give a rating of 4.5/5.
The last dish was ‘linguine e fruti di mare al cartocchio’ (sorry if I have mis-sprelled some of these non English words). This turned out to be Linguine & seafood in a bag. For the uninitiated, Linguine is a form of pasta — flat like fettuccine but not as wide, but wider than spaghetti. The name linguine means “little tongues” in Italian.
This came as a big disappointment. It was as ordinary as it cud get. The packet turned out to be a paper packet – did not really get the purpose but maybe that is how it is served. Sauce of the pasta was OK, not at all great. Pasta texture was good – soft, independent. The Calamari went horribly wrong – they were chewy, not soft, no flavors, totally useless & completely wasted as an ingredient. An apology for a calamari I must say. The other seafood (minimal options) did not make their presence felt , nor did they make a statement. I wud give the seafood part 0.5/5 & the rest 2.5/5 – that makes the rating of overall dish 1.5/5.
We did not dare to try desserts here after two bad dishes & hence headed for L’Opera on the same floor.
Overall, the score of food at Italia adds up to 3.12/5
I wud never go here again for the food but maybe if I am at Promenade & wanna catch up with a bunch of friends, I might end up going here – to b able to spend some good time in a nice ambience & have some food & drinks as well.