|Potato Skins Starter (£3.95)|
|Fresh Soup Starter (£2.95)|
After a brief wait it was on to the main event and we had chosen to sample: Pizza Pepperoni (Pepperoni sausage, chilli oil, red onion, grated mozzarella), Pollo Piccante (Roasted chicken breast with chorizo, roasted peppers, garlic and spicy tomato sauce) and Costada di Manzo al Diane (6oz rib-eye steak with sauce of mushrooms, French mustard, red wine and cream). All were priced at £6.25 as we ordered at, you guessed it 6.25pm and came with a choice of vegetables, chips or salad.
By now we were approaching 7.45pm and we were very aware that we had agreed to leave our table by 8pm. We were asked if we would like to order a dessert and questioned whether or not we would have the time with the member of waiting staff. The lady who looked like she was in charge came over to us and said she had re-arranged the tables to accommodate us, should we wish to take our time over dessert. This was a lovely gesture and we decided to order just one dessert to share between us as the rest of the meal had been so substantial.
We opted for the Pear and Basil Tarte Tatin which was actually turned out to be the low point of the meal. We needn't have worried about the proportion of the dessert and the flavour was overpowered almost completely by the use of herbs. Add into this a slightly undercooked pastry base and I wasn't exactly enthralled by the end to our meal. My dining companion on the other hand said she thoroughly enjoyed it...
vive la différence... or whatever the Italian translation of this might be.
Restaurant Italia Plus' Scores
Venue: 4 out of 5
Ambience: 4 out of 5
Service: 4 out of 5
Presentation: 3 ½ out of 5
Taste: 4 out of 5
Value for Money: 4 ½ out of 5
Overall Score: It's not the authentic Italian feel that you may get from such places as Marabini's or Gianni's in Morpeth, but the food elevates the restaurant way beyond this very slight niggle. A wonderful atmosphere in what is obviously a very popular restaurant delivered an excellent Italian Meal. 4 out of 5.
My scoring system explained: 5 = Outstanding, 4 = Excellent, 3 = Good, 2 = Average, 1 = Poor
Restaurant Italia Plus at The Coquetvale Hotel
Tel: 01669 622900
Fax: 01669 620379