A few months ago, V and I were going to head to Salotto at the Kingston shops on a Sunday night but realised it wasn’t open when only a dark locked up restaurant greeted us. We had no choice but to find somewhere else to eat and we were both in the mood for Italian. We chose one of those restaurants we keeping walking past and never seem to go in to. This was La Dolce Vita along Giles Street. The outside of the restaurant is painted red with the menu clearly displayed outside for passerby’s.
Stepping inside is like stepping into a mini-Italy with kitsch decor – a cream Vespa standing prominently in front of the counter, a smaller version of Rome’s Bocca Della Verita, or mouth of truth, a roman statue and several other small imitation relics from Italy.
The menu is quite extensive with so many Italian dishes on the menu – pastas (from $18.90-$26.90), pizzas (from $19.90-$22.90), and items from the grill and other proteins (from $24.90-$30.90) as well as dessert (from $12.50-$13.50). Prices are not cheap but I guess the Kingston ‘tax’ has to be considered.
I ordered the risotto pescatora ($26.90) which came with king prawns, squid, fish and mussels. I was happy with the portion size and the way the risotto had been cooked. Not too soft or gluggy! Diners get the option of either a creamy or tomato based sauce for the risotto. I chose the simple tomato based sauce (it’s healthier) and was so glad I made the right choice. This was delicious and simple Italian. I would have liked a bit more seafood but I was still happy with the dish.
V ordered the spaghetti moscovita ($19.90) with smoked salmon, vodka, shallots and cream. This dish actually uses penne pasta but V asked for a swap. She was also satisfied with her meal and was happy the vodka had been cooked out of the sauce.
I really wanted to try out the dolce menu and HAD to order the house made tiramisu ($13.50). Unfortunately, the tiramisu had sold out for the night. I didn’t feel like any other dessert on the menu, so I skipped dessert instead. The risotto would start to expand in my stomach sooner or later anyway.
We both enjoyed our meals at La Dolce Vita. There is a variety of food to cater to most people’s tastes and there were many families with children dining in. The food isn’t wow-tastic but it certainly delivers in terms of balance in flavour and portion size. We didn’t wait long for our meals to arrive even though the restaurant was packed, so that was impressive. Noise levels are average for a small restaurant – there’s chatter in the background but it’s not so loud that you can’t hear your dining companion.
It’s good to know there’s another nice hearty Italian restaurant in Kingston. I can’t find opening hours for La Dolce Vita on its website, but google says they are open for dinner seven days a week.
Value for money 7/10
FPJ score 22.5/30
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