Have you ever been to a Restaurant which leaves a lasting impression on you & your friends for days, weeks and months? A Restaurant you can’t stop thinking about and recommend to everybody and anybody who’d listen.
Piccolino’s in Newcastle is just that.
A few months ago, I was recommended Piccolino’s by Club Individual while I was away on Business in Newcastle for 2 months. As a lover of one of their sister Restaurants, The Restaurant Bar & Grill in Glasgow, I couldn’t say no!
Via twitter, I booked a table (always handy!) for my friends who recently moved to Newcastle & myself. When we arrived, we were sat at the bar & given glasses of complimentary Rose Prosecco before sitting down and ordering. Looking at the menu, there was a lot of variety & it was hard choosing. I think we spent a good 15 minutes trying to pick!
For Starters, I ordered Calamari Fritti (£6.95), my friend Emma ordered Bruschetta Con Pomodoro (£5.25) & her husband Rory ordered Caprese which is a Tomato & Mozzarella Salad (£6.75). The dishes were presented beautifully, I instantly fell in love with the Calamari & the homemade mayonnaise which accompanied it. If I really had to find fault, the batter of the Calamari was a little too salty for my personal taste but it didn’t stop me from loving every single bite.
My friends loved their Starters as well. The Mozzarella was fresh, the basil pesto drizzled over it teased your mouth with a whole lot of flavours. The Bruschetta was equally as good. The amount of garlic on the tomatoes was perfect, very ripe, fresh and it was a great size as well. Usually when you order Bruschetta, it is usually too small or too big.
After the plates were taken away, our Main Courses arrived around 10 minutes later, the perfect amount of time to wait I think, not too soon so you are still digesting food & not too long that you are starving. It was really hard for me to choose my Main but I decided to try Linguine ai Gamberetti which is Sautéed King Prawns, Chilli, Garlic & Parsley (£12.50). Emma ordered Nodino di Vitello which is a 12oz Veal Chop, grilled with Rosemary & Lemon Butter and Hand Cut Fries (£21.95). Rory ordered one of the specials of the day which I don’t honestly remember the name of but it was a white fish (sea bass maybe?) oven cooked in baking parchment paper alongside herbs, garlic, vegetables & capers.
My main course was full of flavour, the linguine was cooked perfectly to my liking, the prawns were a great size & they didn’t scrape on the quantity I was served either. The thing I loved most about my order was the fact that minimal ingredients were used in something that had so much flavour, good simple food.
Emma’s Veal was literally to die for. I had a good few slices of it after begging her to try it & I have to tell you, I instantly fell in love. To me, that dish alone summed up my love of Piccolino in a few bites. Can you literally be that in love with a veal chop? Hell yes. It was very simple, full of flavour & cooked perfectly. Emma was also madly in love with her Veal Chop and also loved the mayo I had with my Calamari so much she asked the waiter if she could have some so she could dip her fries in it LOL. Oh it was good. So good.
Rory’s fishy dish (sorry I have no clue what it was!) was nice. I’m not a huge fan of fish so I never tried it but he really enjoyed it. The amount of capers that the fish was cooked in, made it very salty but not overpowering. The vegetables were cooked perfectly, melting in your mouth & the dish was a good size. Once again, the dish was full of flavour. Sometimes with fish, it can be very bland but this was not the case at Piccolino.
Main Courses done & it was safe to say that we were all stuffed. I wasn’t going to have any dessert, however, as soon as I saw that they had Pistachio Gelato (£5.50) on the menu, my eyes instantly lit up. How could I not eat my favourite gelato? I adore anything Pistachio. The Gelato was so smooth and creamy, I could have eaten more but alas, other than licking the bowl clean or ordering more Gelato, I didn’t I would have loved Pistachio Gelato with little grounded bits of Pistachio through it instead of being all smooth, but hey…. smooth is just as good! It was served with a Pistachio Biscotti which was nice & crunchy. Maybe the next time I go, they’ll have little bits in the Gelato for me? *wink wink*
Emma ordered Tiramisu (£6.20). It was light, fluffy, full of flavour from the coffee & smelt amazing. It was served with a light custard & you could have licked the plate clean as with everything we ate that day!
It’s safe to say that after that meal, Piccolino is one of my favourite Restaurants EVER. I am also quite lucky that I travel to Newcastle a lot with my new job so I will be able to visit Piccolino’s more often. My next trip? Next week! I can’t wait! The first thing I did was let them know I’d be booking a table I would without question, advise everyone and anyone to visit this Restaurant. You’ll leave with a smile on your face & it will not disappoint.
- Food - 9/109/10
- Service - 8/108/10
- Value - 7/107/10