Sunday, 17 June 2012

Ad: Food Review: Antonio's Trattoria Calabria @ TTDI

Hello hello dear readers! How's everyone doing? Hope everyone's feeling jolly :) Today's food review is on my favourite Italian restaurant: Antonio's Trattoria Calabria at Taman Tun Dr Ismail (TTDI). I've been going there with my family for many years now and their food has been consistently scrumptious throughout the years! I don't know if many people know about Antonio's, but I definitely think you should give it a try if you love Italian food :)

Today's post unfortunately will not be full of photos (boo!) because unfortunately I've never brought a proper camera with me to this place. Also, no photos of the decor this time. However, don't fret; you can look at them at their Facebook page. Will post a link at the bottom of this review.

Right after we ordered, we were immediately served some sliced french bread with olive oil spread. Unfortunately, no photos were taken. We must've been really hungry hahaha. They are a nice start to any meal and if our orders ever arrive late, this is definitely a good distraction.

Creamy Mushroom Bruschetta
Ok let's start with the appertiser. We ordered the creamy mushroom bruschetta. It came soon after we ordered (quick service on most nights, unless they're super busy). It was extremely good. They were generous with the mushrooms and generous with the cream sauce too. Everything was just right, the bread had a wonderful crisp, it was not too salty, not too creamy that it overwhelms the was just perfect! Just a word of caution: it's extremely HOT! Do not make the mistake of immediately eating it after it's served. I know it's hard to resist good, fresh food but the cream sauce retains a lot of heat and you will definitely burn your tongue if you eat it immediately. You do not want to burn your tongue, especially before having the main course.

The other dishes we ordered for our main course were the spaghetti marinara, seafood tortellini and spaghetti gamberi aglio e olio. You can choose the pasta for most of the dishes. You can choose from spaghetti, linguini, fettucini, and if I'm not mistaken the last one is the multi-coloured fettucini (will have to check again the next time I come here). Again, the service was prompt. Oh and before our main dishes were served, they served a shot of concentrated citrus juice for everyone. This is to neutralise our taste buds so that we can enjoy the actual taste of our dishes for the main course.

Spaghetti Marinara

The spaghetti marinara is a seafood dish. You can choose to have it served in garlic-based sauce or tomato-based sauce. As you can see, this time we went for the tomato-based sauce. Personally, I usually prefer the tomato-based sauce. I think the natural flavours of the seafood blends very well with the tomatoes and herbs. As you can see from the photo, the restaurant is very generous with the seafood. You definitely will not be disappointed with the portions. If you're not a big eater, you should probably share this with another person haha. There were plenty of clams, calamari, prawns and a few muscles here and there. Overall, a very satisfying dish. The tomatoes in the sauce do not overpower the seafood flavour, and that natural sweetness from the prawns make the dish even more drool-worthy. The pasta was cooked al dente (just right); it has never been under- or over-cooked in my experience :)

Seafood Tortellini

The seafood tortellini is a cream-based pasta. I can't remember if we could choose the type of sauce, but yeah we went for the cream-based one. It was delicious. The tortellini was tender but not too soft; it definitely did not break apart when i cut them. It's packed with flavours and the creamy sauce makes you drool for more. The tortellinis are stuffed with seafood mixed with a variety of herbs. I can't really tell what exactly is in them but it's super good and that's all that really matters (unless you have a food allergy then please please ask the waiter/waitress what's in it before you order!). However, I do not recommend it if you are super hungry. It's not that the portion is small, it's just that unlike pasta noodles, you can count the number of tortellini pieces on your plate. It is quite likely that you'll finish your dish before anyone else finishes theirs! Even if it's easier to finish this dish, believe me it'll make you full. Only you probably won't realise it til it's too late lol.

Gamberi Aglio E Olio

Last but not least is the gamberi aglio e olio. Aglio e olio is actually a very simple dish that primarily consists olive oil, garlic and chili flakes. Antonio's also has the aglio e olio by itself; the difference between the two dishes is that the gamberi aglio e olio comes with prawns - giant prawns! Ok well not giant prawns, but you get what I mean (look at the photo!). It's a simple dish that appeals to a lot of people. If you want a relatively safe dish, I don't think the aglio e olio can go wrong anywhere. It's a rather light dish, not in terms of portion, but in the sense that it is unlikely that you will get sick of it before you finish what's on your plate. And what I mean by this previous sentence is for example not everyone can take a lot of a cream-based sauce, because they tend to get sick of the taste, especially if the portion is huge. This dish is pretty light, though sometimes a bit oily to some people, as olive oil is the main ingredient. The broccoli adds a nice touch to the dish with its texture.The prawns brings a flavour up a notch, which, to me, makes this dish better than the regular aglio e olio.  Definitely a must-try!

We usually have tiramisu for dessert (if we have any space left in our tummies!) which is absolutely amazing. We didn't for this particular trip though. I'm not sure if the tiramisu contains alcohol, but to be safe, be sure to notify the waiter/waitress that you do not want alcohol in it, or any of your food (if you don't take any alcohol that is). My family and I are regulars at Antonio's so they know to exclude alcohol in all of our food :) Oh and the price range for the pasta dishes are around RM20-RM30 on average. They also serve lamb shank, and steak too if I remember correctly. Those dishes will of course cost a little more.

Overall, the service is excellent, the ambiance is warm and cozy, the decor is simple and the food is extraordinary! I definitely recommend this place for a pleasant Italian dining experience. The next time you are craving for Italian food, make sure you give Antonio's a try!

Verdict: 5 out of 5
Note: This restaurant serves halal meat, but does not have halal certification because it serves alcohol.

Til next time,

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