Sunday, 24 February 2013

Nonna's Kitchen Review - Edinburgh

Nonna's Kitchen is an Italian restaurant in Morningside, Edinburgh. Until this visit I'd never been but I'd heard good things about it from a few people. It's smaller than I expected inside, but with modern decor and bright flowers on the tables, still with an Italian feel. I'd booked at the last minute and got an early table for a couple of hours, but on arrival the place was packed with a mixture of friends, families and couples. It was cosy and convivial, with a small army of waiters watched over by the matriarch who seemed to be in charge.

The Arancini
In addition to the main menu I was extremely impressed by the waiter who reeled off from memory a long line of specials, exquisitely detailed and with great knowledge of each dish. A lot of these included fresh seafood dishes for both starters and mains. From the specials we chose the Arancini for a starter, one of my absolute favourites. Risotto rice shaped into balls, filled with cheese, breaded and deep fried, they were served with a tomato sauce. This was both rich and fresh in flavour and the Arancini were perfect. The crumb was crispy, the rice hot with a creamy but not claggy texture. Inside the cheese oozed out and everything was set off nicely by the slight fragrance of a touch of basil.

For mains we chose one of the specials and one dish from the a la carte menu. The special Pumpkin Ravioli was served in a cream sauce with hazelnuts, very rich but delicious. The pasta was cooked well and filled with slightly sweet pumpkin flesh. The hazelnuts added a good bit of contrast and texture to the smooth pasta, filling and sauce. We also had the Pizza Quattro Formaggi. The base was a good one, thin and not too much crust. The cheeses were a mix of mozzarella, gorgonzola, taleggio and pecorino. The gorgonzola gave it a strong, gutsy taste but was not too overpowering and you could taste all of the cheeses individually. It was one of the best four cheese pizzas I've had for a while.

Pumpkin Ravioli

We didn't order any extras, desserts or coffee but we did have a decent bottle of the house white, and a complimentary small plate of fresh bread with butter, oil and vinegar was served after ordering. Service was excellent. As well as our waiter with the incredible memory, the wine was brought to us unopened to ensure it was the right one. It's little touches like this which impress and rounded the whole thing off to a most enjoyable evening. The dishes and ingredients were authentic and you can tell that a lot of care, effort and time has gone into making the place a cut above your average Italian. Two courses for two plus one bottle of wine and service came to £55 but we thought it was worth it for the excellent food and service. They also offer a short but decent lunch and pre-theatre menu.

Pizza Quattro Formaggi

 More details Nonna's Kitchen 45 Morningside Rd Edinburgh EH10 4AZ

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