Cuisine: Italian, Chain
★ ★ ★
Food ordered [03/23/12]:
- prosciutto e melone (melon & parma ham, baby leaf salad & acacia honey dressing) £6.95
- penne al salmone (smoked salmon, baby spinach & cream) £9.95
I had been to this restaurant once before with my family. I dined for dinner with my mother this time. I often have a rather negative attitude towards any kind of chain restaurant but this one wasn't bad. They note on their menu that they are the only Italian chain restaurant in London which is still family-run. The staff were very friendly and seemed genuinely happy. The decor was pleasant although not special.
The food exceeded my expectations; although which I have to admit, were not high. The salad, I shared with my mother. It was very good although the prosciutto had a texture more closely resembling ham than prosciutto. This may not be much a criticism, however, since for some reason the majority of the proscuito in London is the same way disappointingly. The dish as a whole was crisp and refreshing. The textures as well as flavours of the prosciutto and melon were very complementary.
Prosciutto e melone.
The penne as a whole was heavier than I'd have liked although that element of the dish may be inherent in a pasta with cream sauce as well as fish in it. Withholding that one detractor, the pasta was perfectly al dente and the cream sauce was flavourful but not overwhelming. The salmon was not bad but I didn't care for it very much-- it was strangely very salty. I should mention as well, that the portion was quite large (especially for Europe) and I didn't finish it although it was definitely good value-for-money.
Penne al salmone.