Monday, 11 April 2011

Ciao Bella, Leeds

On a pleasant Sunday evening and on the hunt for some food that wasn't a Sunday roast, we wandered down to Brewery Wharf and Ciao Bella on Dock Street.
The restaurant was fairly empty and with it being a nice evening we sat outside. We were given the menus and our drinks order taken.
For my starter I opted for a small portion of one of the pasta dishes; Penne all'Arrabiata - pepperoni garlic, chili in a olive oil and tomato sauce.

This was actually quite good, pasta wasn't over cooked and the sauce was vibrant with plenty of tomatoey garlic flavour alongside a very gentle chili heat.

The main however well that's a different story...

I went for Stincotto d'Agnello - shank of lamb, oven cooked with a roast garlic and savoury cabbage in a red wine reduction served with mashed potatoes.
Now the Lamb itself was nicely cooked and the mash was fairly reasonable, what I had a problem with was the sauce. To put it plainly it was weird. It tasted neither like a red wine reduction or of roast garlic, it had some flavour I cant really describe, a bit like a slightly artificial, slightly sweet flavour, it just didn't taste good. The dish needed a proper red wine sauce preferably with a mountain of rosemary. The cabbage was not good either, slightly overcooked and contributed nothing to the overall dish, a slightly steamed savoy cabbage with its vibrant green would have been a much better choice and added a  much needed dimension to the dish.

Service was not brilliant either, it was friendly and if the restaurant was busy we wouldn't have minded the speed of the service because it was very slow but like I said before the restaurant was fairly empty.

On a brighter note, the Italian craft beer, Gradisca, they had on was very nice. Hoppy, refreshing and lovely on a warm spring evening.

Ciao Bella
20 Dock Street,
0113 2469444

Ciao Bella on Urbanspoon

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