Monday, 16 April 2012

Bella Italia, Stratford-upon-Avon

I am not a fan of pasta as a rule and have to be coaxed into consuming it by the promise of creamy white sauces and puddles of garlic butter; both of which this place happily provides. The starter was mini garlic bastioni with a garlic butter dip. Only here would one experience the joys of dipping bread into a bowl of melted garlicky fat, utterly guilt-free. The only danger is the scrum for the bread. The best advice is to divvy it up beforehand in a civilized sharing-platter way and avoid unseemly scrambles and a butter-spattered face.

My main was the spaghetti carbonara which was just how I like it. Spaghetti positively drowned in creamy sauce and cubes of salty ham. Drew's dish I can't remember but I know it had chunks of red pepper in it and chicken and he loved it.

We discovered a dessert offer that serves coffee and a smaller portion of certain puds at a reasonable £3.95. I had the latte, served in a glass, small amount of foam and piping hot. Drew opted for black filter coffee and chocolate torte. A generous cupful and the dearest, dinkiest slice of torte you have ever seen. If you are the sort that insists on dieting, it is perfect. Good for budgeting too; but I am too fond of pudding to make such unnecessary compromises. I can't comment on the flavour as I was not allowed to taste it.

Access is a little tight. There's a steep step up into the place but the tables near the window, if free, are roomy.

Access: *****
Latte: *****

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