I still remember the friend who recommend me to try Carluccio’s as they have a nice seafood pasta. So it has always been an Italian place that I have been wanting to try but the opportunity has only come recently.
Carluccioa’s caffè aim to provide us with good authentic Italian food. There are many branches that I have seen around London such as Brent Cross shopping centre, Brunswick etc. But this evening we choice the branch in Covent Garden since it was nearer to us after work. The caffè covers two floors which is located close to both Covent Garden and Leicester Square tube station.
When we arrived at the reception we were shown to the next room to wait for our table. The room is actually a food shop, where you can buy authentic Italian food to take home. We did not have to wait too long before we were seated on the second floor.
We decided to have a starter to begin our meal and choice to share the Mozzarella Dell’ Isola (£6.50) – Cured Parma ham topped with rocket leaves, roasted peppers and melted buffalo mozzarella. This is a dish which is enough for one person to have as a starter but we to share to start off light.
From the starter we moved on to the main course where we choice a dish from the pasta section. If you do not fancy a pasta then there are choice of other dishes like steak, fish, seafood or chicken.
At the time when a friend recommend the seafood pasta I remember it had lobster. But I could not see it on the menu when we were there for dinner. I suspect that menu might change from time to time, since we were have a selection from the autumn menu. So instead we decided to try the Linguine Ai Frutti Di Mare (£10.50) – Linguine with squid rings, mussels, clams and prawns with garlic, herbs and chilli.
We also went for the Pasta con Funghi (£7.75) – Egg pappardelle with mix of variety of mushrooms including shiitake, oyster and button mushrooms. This was a nice dish but it was on the dry side. It felt like it has been sitting in the oven for some time to be kept warm, since when it arrived at my table the top of the pasta dish was dry. Fortunately I had some sauce on the base to mix it up together.
The meal was finished off with dessert and there are a variety to choose. We ordered the Tiramisu (£4.95) which is no stranger to many as an Italian dessert.
At the time the gelati ice cream on the menu caught my eyes. On the menu it state that it is Carluccio’s own authentic “Gelati Artgianali” that have been made traditionally to give it the intense flavours. There are 4 flavours to choose – Arabica Coffee, bitter chocolate, strawberry and vanilla. I decided on the Arabica coffee gelatic ice cream (£3.75). This was a creamy ice cream which had an intense coffee flavour. It was like having an iced cold coffee. The scoops were served with a wafer with Carluccio’s stamped on it.
I have to admit that it is cold for ice cream but I was craving for some. I completed my whole meal with Cicccolata (£2.15) – creamy hot chocolate. This was to warm myself up after the cold gelati ice cream.
Although we came here for dinner, I think the atmosphere is much suited for lunch. Since there are also panini that you can order it make it a great venue for lunch.
(Prices are correct at the time I was dining there)
Carluccio’s Caffe (Covent Garden)