five layers of divineness, complimentary ice cream layer cake
1. calamari fritti, 2. cream of pumpkin soup, 3. spicy Italian sausages
Chef Enzo who is in charge of the kitchen at this small unassuming place (you can't miss it - it's right next to the biggest duck in SS2 aka Hoppy Duck so follow the quack) adds an Italian homey feel to the food here. In fact, to be honest, his pasta dishes with the tomato sauce kinda reminds me of what I cook at home. Originally from Pizza Uno, Chef Enzo also teaches pasta and desserts classes at the Cooking House, which is where my friend met him over some intricate twisting of pasta dough to make tortellini.
1. chicken and pineapple pizza, 2. Nicole being very amused, 3. thumbs up!, 4. the "little ears" that blew us away
We had a riot here, ordering loads of dishes to share and taking forever to decide but Patrick, the nice waiter was very patient with all of us (he's quite a character too!). To start off, it was an array of appetizers to share - the calamari fritti (RM22.90) with a generous portion of rocket on the side, the insalata del casa (RM22.90), a salad with chicken bits that was quite tasty and the mussels with pasta (RM31.90). I didn't get to try much of the calamari but unlike the crispy version, this one was coated in a tomato sauce hence it was a little soggy. Nevertheless it was still very tasty. Salad was laden with chicken bits, sundried tomatoes with crisp salad leaves that we all enjoyed. Mussels were good too, a little bigger than I expected and it totally reminded me how often I want to buy a bag of Boston Bay mussels to make this simple dish with chopped garlic.
1. so good, so good - sticky date pudding with the addictive butterscotch sauce, 2. be still my beating heart!, 3. tiramisu under the watchful eye of the paparazzi
Soups were also ordered, we all loved the cream of pumpkin (RM9.90) vs the 3 mushroom soup (RM9.90) for its subtle and creamy taste. Somehow the mushroom soup lacked much oomph for us and we preferred the chunky version you get in delicious instead. The kids had a large chicken and pineapple pizza (RM29.90) to share. I didn't get to taste that since the guys and the kids polished it off but it looked good from afar. Sausages were also ordered by D and lucky fella, his order got messed up hence they gave him 2 types - a spicy Italian sausage and German bratwurst. We all preferred the spicy one vs the more bland tasting but juicier bratwurst.
We all had various pastas - a spicy penne amatriciana (RM26.90), a linguini pork pasta using bits of Sakura pork (RM26.90), linguini carbonara (RM26.90) and everyone's favourite, the orecchiette with tomato sauce, eggplant, spinach with ricotta cheese (sorry no price, as they lumped the 2 open food prices together!). The orecchiette, which is also known as "little ears" went so well with the vegetable combination that we were all asking to share my friend's pasta. The next time I go, this will definitely be my order here!
Despite how much we ate for appetizers and mains, we still found room for desserts (!) after some persuasion from Patrick. Luckily we did, as we totally enjoyed the sweet treats. Tiramisu (RM14.90) came served in a martini glass and got all the camera action but I thought it wasn't too fantastic as we totally preferred the sticky date pudding (RM14.90). Served with an addictively good butterscotch sauce (Nicholas, kept ladling it into his gelato, RM13.80 for 2 scoops and beaming happily!), we all couldn't help digging into the pudding. Last but not least we were given a free slice of the ice cream layer cake - Splashie Boy loves this as it was a great combination of creamy gelato with an icy tart strawberry layer on top.
Do drop by for italian home cooking (just don't expect any bells and whistles here) like any Italian nonna would cook for their doting grandchildren. They also serve main meals like lamb shank and roast pork (they use Sakura pork). Enzo also takes people to Italy for gourmet tours hence, if you are interested in discovering his country, you can also enquire at the restaurant. Classes to learn how to make pasta and the desserts served here can be found at The Cooking House, Desa Sri Hartamas. More pixs are found in my Flickr set.
42, Jalan SS 2/66
Tel No: 03-7877 8586
(Non Halal. Restaurant is the same row as Nam Heong, Lorong Seratus Tahun and Hoppy Duck. Open for lunch and dinner daily.)
*Disclaimer: The opinions expressed here is entirely based on my personal tastebuds and may vary for others. This review is time sensitive; changes may occur to the place later on that can affect this opinion. The reviewer also declares that she has not received any monetary or non-monetary compensation from this place for writing the review.
Others who have ate here: