Dolce vita

Try these great Ital­ian eater­ies for a taste of the good life.

Glamour (South Africa) - - Guide/Dine Out -

/ Dur­ban

Al Firenze 21 Ray Paul Dr, La Lu­cia; 031 572 5559

This vibey trat­to­ria, with its checked table­cloths and re­laxed ve­ran­dah, is a firm favourite with lo­cals and tourists in search of au­then­tic Ital­ian clas­sics. The Me­lan­zane Rosti (roasted brin­jal with gar­lic and chilli; R70) is a great starter and Veal al Li­mone (R145) makes for an ex­cel­lent main. Still feel­ing for tra­di­tional tastes? Then end with the cas­sata (a boozy sponge cake; R45).

Old Town Italy 39 Merid­ian Dr, Umh­langa Rocks; 031 566 5008

Im­ported Ital­ian in­gre­di­ents and fresh lo­cal prod­ucts make for a happy mar­riage in this unique mar­ket. Try a pasta like Penne al l’arrab­bi­ata (a spicy tomato-based dish; R70) or cre­ate a deli board with in­ter­est­ing cheeses, meats and ar­ti­sanal bread.

La Casa Nos­tra 1 Main Rd, White Sands Shop­ping Cen­tre, Umd­loti; 031 568 1996

This fam­ily-run restau­rant of­fers great Ital­ian stan­dards in an easy-go­ing set­ting. Try the As­paragi Al Forno (baked as­para­gus with tomato, moz­zarella and cream; R109), fol­lowed by the Casa Nos­tra seafood pasta (SQ*). Mamma’s Home­made Ti­ramisu (R79) makes for the per­fect end­ing to a de­li­cious meal.

/ Joburg

La Cucina di Ciro 43 Sev­enth Ave, Park­town North; 011 442 5187

A leader in culi­nary cir­cles, Ciro serves su­perb food in a cosy con­verted house. The menu in­cludes stand­outs like the starter carpac­cio (R110) and veal with tuna sauce and fresh as­para­gus (R185). End with their sig­na­ture can­noli (cream-filled pas­try; R65).

Tortellino D’oro Cnr Pre­to­ria Rd and Vic­to­ria St, Oak­lands Shop­ping Cen­tre, High­lands North; 011 483 1249

Ex­cel­lent in­gre­di­ents, high stan­dards and un­pre­ten­tious decor make this a wildly pop­u­lar spot, so book ahead. The menu in­cludes a fine buf­falo cap­rese starter (R98), home­made pas­tas (R115) and hearty dishes like Spez­zatino (tomato-based veal stew; R165).

Cafe Del Sol Clas­sico Cnr Olive Rd and Pres­i­dent Fouché Dr, rand­burg; 011 704 6493

This pop­u­lar spot has a re­laxed ve­ran­dah that’s per­fect for a bot­tle of Prosecco (R340), and a fresh and con­tem­po­rary in­te­rior. The stand­outs include pri­mav­era rolls (rocket, parma ham and moz­zarella; R78), pump­kin risotto (R120) and sor­bet (R55).

/ Cape Town

Os­te­ria Tarantino 125A Waterkant St, De Waterkant; 076 505 1771

Tucked away in the city’s his­toric De Waterkant, this quaint eatery spe­cialises in au­then­tic fare like Tus­can Ci­gars (strac­ciatella cheese wrapped in parma ham; R120), home­made pasta, in­clud­ing clas­sic Penne Ama­tri­ciana (pancetta, toma­toes and chili; R85) and Ti­ramisu (R45). the cof­fee’s great, too!

Step­broth­ers Cnr Waterkant and Chi­ap­pini St, De Waterkant; 079 888 7200/083 657 3184

Laid-back and un­pre­ten­tious, this airy Ital­ian gem is in­spired by the own­ers’ Nonna (grand­mother), so it’s only right to be­gin with Nonna’s Rosette (rolled pasta with ham and cheese; R145). The 1.3kg Fiorentina T-bone steak (SQ*) is grilled to per­fec­tion and made to be shared. Finish off with the choco­late salami with pis­ta­chio ice cream (R45).

True Italic 15 Bree St, CBD; 021 418 7655

Trendy lo­ca­tion, charm­ing own­ers and con­sis­tently good food at­tract lo­cals and tourists alike to this ware­house-style spot. Share a plat­ter of im­ported meats and cheeses (from R180), then try a sig­na­ture main like tagli­atelle pasta with porcini mush­rooms (R135). And leave space for home­made ice cream like the strac­ciatella (milk-based gelato with choco­late shav­ings; from R40).

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