It's rather busy for a Wednesday night, and as we walk in, our eyes bulge at the delicious looking pizzas coming out of the woodfire oven. Mmmmm pizza. We are seated upstairs. The room has a lovely vibe and an understated elegance. The waitstaff are relaxed and friendly and we like the place immediately. Oh, and during the week, it's BYO. Fabulous!
We started with warm, crusty bread served with The Little General Olive Oil and a selection of marinated Sicilian and Ligurian olives. Yum!
Rarely can I go past pasta if I'm at an Italian restaurant. The spaghetti fruitti di mare is a fresh and light pasta dish with succulent hunks of fish, juicy calamari, noble king prawns, moorish mussels and our dear little friends, vongole. The sauce is hit with white wine and ruby rings of chilli. You can really appreciate the individual flavours of each of the seafood items in this dish as they are not overwhelmed by a thick, tomatoey ragout as is often the case with marinaras.
Wanting something hearty, Mr Bear ordered the handmade gnocchi with prok and fennel sausage, broccolini, chilli and pecorino. I snagged (sorry, couldn't resist that pun) a bit and was impressed. The fennel gave the dish a lovely vitality and buoyed its heaviness. It was thoroughly enjoyed.
Tiramisu is on my "let's explore you" list at the moment. Having shied away from it for years after perhaps an inferior tiramisu incident and consequent scarring, I am loving it currently, and the tiramisu at Vicini was rather spectacular. So spectacular in fact that Mr Bear who didn't want any dessert ended up eating half of it. It was soft and rich and those strawberries were as good as they look.
Next time Vicini beckons, I am going to try their pizza as I had slight food envy when the adjacent table had two, steaming, vivid pizzas delivered. As I said earlier, mmmmmm pizza.
The delightful Mr Bear and I, rosy and full after a wonderful meal to celebrate Leap Day... Oh, and we all managed to avoid any sort of proposal... Sorry St Brigid!