“ Address: 55 Almada Street / Hamilton / ML3 0HQ „
*Review originally posted on Ciao 22/02 and remains unedited for dooyoo*
Last week, my sister decided that she would like to take me out for an early birthday treat. She allowed me to choose where I fancied and I had decided on a nice local Italian restaurant. I put in the reservation unaware that the restaurant was closed on a Monday. We had to find somewhere else. My home town has very little in the way of Italian restaurants so we searched further afield and made an online reservation at another restaurant in the next town. When we turned up, a sign confirmed that they were closed on a Monday too. Thankfully, another Italian restaurant around the corner was open and I had read some positive reviews on it so we decided to go there. I am very glad that we did!
55 Almada Street
Open 11.45 - 22.00 daily.
EATaliano is opened in January 2013 so is a fairly new restaurant. It is located a 15minute walk from Hamilton town centre and is local to the court, offices and the University. Car parking is available. It is very easy to find and the building is very modern and fresh looking. Inside the restaurant is equally as beautiful. There is an arrangement of booth seating, high tables and regular tables to accomodate different sized parties. The restaurant has some interesting wall features include two full walls made of wooden, open boxes where empty wine bottles sit. It looks quite fancy. There is a spacious waiting area and a coffee and cake display which gives the restaurant a posh, coffee shop type feel.
The restaurant is set across one level and is disabled and pram friendly. The toilets are near the entrance and there is a disabled toilet and changing facilities available. The toilets are very modern and stylish. They were absolutely immaculate and well stocked with posh hand wash and hand cream (which my Mum slathered her hands in before leaving)! The restaurant has a relaxed, busy atmosphere so perhaps not somewhere you would dine for a romantic dinner date.
~Food On Offer~
EATaliano offers a al a carte menu and also a lunch express menu. The lunch menu is available everyday from 12-4pm. A childrens menu is also available but I didn't get to see that on our visit to the restaurant.
~Al a Carte Menu~
The al a carte menu is very varied and there is a great selection of dishes to suit all tastes and budgets. The menu's are well displayed and clear as they are written in English with Italian titles. The full al a carte menu can be found on the website but to give an idea of what they offer, I will note a few options.
*Antipasti (starters) - calamari, mussels in sauce, soup and black pudding dishes (over 15 options priced from £3.50-£12.95). Vegetarian options include breaded mushrooms and mozzerella sticks.
*Bruschetta with various toppings (£3.95-£7.95)
*Pizza - more than 20 options for toppings including lots of vegetarian choices. (Around £9.00)
*Pasta - you choose the type of pasta you want and which sauce. Choices include carbonara, mixed shellfish, special sauces and standard sauces. (from £6.95). Lasagne and vegetarian lasagne is also available.
*Other dishes include steak, fish in sauces, burgers with sides, chicken done in various ways and also veal. (from £8.50)
*Desserts - everything from ice cream to tiramisu and pizza sticks with dips (around £3.95)
There are lots of side options available, various breads and also small dish options that you can mix and match. There is a wide selection of drinks on offer from wine to soft drinks and milkshakes.
~Lunch Express Menu~
For those who want a simple menu to choose from, this Lunch menu represents excellent value for money. Expect to pay £4.95 (one course), £7.95 (two courses) or £9.95 (three courses).
*Antipasti - a choice of 8 including steamed mussels, soup of the day and bruschetta
*Main meals - a choice of 10 including whatever way you like your pasta. Options include lasagne (including vegetarian), pizza, fishcakes and a burger as well as a varied selection of pasta dishes.
*Desserts - tiramisu, sticky toffee pudding, ice cream and dessert of the day
You can also select a soup and ciabatta combo as part of the set menu.
There ended up being three of us going for lunch on Monday as our Mum decided to tag along. We arrived at EATaliano just after 1pm and found it to be very busy. We were seen to straight away and seated a booth next to the window. The service we received was really good. The staff were friendly and chatty at the right times. Because the restaurant was quite busy, service was a little slow. There were plenty of staff clearing tables and serving food but the food was definitely worth the wait. The restaurant was buzzing on our arrival with local workers, couples and those meeting up for a meal with young children so it caters and accommodates all in my opinion.
We decided to order from the Lunch Express Menu. Given the amount of choice on offer, I would say the menu is incredibly good value for money. The standard of both menus is excellent in my opinion. Whilst not all of the options are typical Italian dishes, this is actually a positive aspect in a way as the restaurant can cater for those who don't like pizza or pasta! We were made to feel very welcome in this restaurant and the booth we were seated at was comfortable enough. We ordered some drinks - a Coca Cola, a Diet Coke and an Irn Bru which arrived in glass bottles and was poured for us.
Our orders were taken quickly and we were able to enjoy our drinks and have a chat before our starters arrived. I personally chose the Mozzarella Sticks which were deep fried (I know, naughty for the diet) and came with a tomato dip. The portion size was just right for a starter - two large sticks cooked to perfection with delicious cheese. The dip was lovely and tangy and I received a small bundle of fresh tasting salad. I enjoyed my starter. My sister is a huge fan of fish dishes and opted for the Steamed mussells which were served with a chilli sauce and piece of garlic bread. She thoroughly enjoyed her starter and commented that the quality of the mussells were excellent. I tried the sauce and found it to be very tasty and spicy. Mum ordered the Chicken Liver Pate which was served with red onion marmalade and toast. I couldn't resist trying a bit and found the pate to be very nice indeed. The starters were nicely filling but not overly so. All plates were cleared and we had happy tummies.
After 30 minutes or so, our main courses arrived. I was spoiled for choice with the options on offer. I couldn't decide between two dishes so my sister ordered one and I ordered the other so we could share. I opted for Carbonara with the tagliatelle pasta. I received a perfectly sized and presented portion of cream pasta finished with bacon pieces. My dish was absolutely delicious. I think if I had a bigger portion, I wouldn't have been able to finish it as it was quite rich and creamy. The pasta was cooked to perfection and the bacon pieces are meaty.
My sister ordered Pollo Milanese which is a breaded chicken breast served with penne arrabiatta. This was another hit and I took great pleasure in having a third of it. The chicken was of a high quality and coated and seasoned well. The pasta portion was small but sufficient given the size of the coated chicken. It had a spicy flavouring which I liked and so did my sister. Mum being Mum, selected a burger for her main course. This was beautifully presented on a wooden board. The burger was clearly handmade and freshly made. It was presented in a seeded type roll and was served with a bowl of hand cut chips and a light salad. Of course I accepted a piece to try and can confirm that this was one of the best burgers I had ever tried. A lot of attention had gone in to making it look and taste delicious. The chips were amazing and we all shared them. They were crisp on the outside and fluffy and light inside.
Our main courses exceeded expectations. We all agreed that the food of a top notch quality. The meals were all cooked well and served piping hot. The chef doesn't slack on presentation either and I could understand why our meals took a little longer to cook and serve. We were offered parmasan cheese and freshly ground pepper too. My Mum doesn't have quite as big an appetite as myself and my sister. We couldn't resist desserts and asked to see the menu back. We were informed of the dessert of the day which happened to be two dishes - cheesecake sponge and some sort of chocolate based cake but I cannot quite remember the name. Mum did insist on three spoons though - yes, she wanted a piece of our dessert! We love her so obliged!
I ordered my favourite of Sticky Toffee pudding. My dessert was neatly presented on a rectangular platter. The piece of cake was quite large and was served at just the right temperature. It was spongey and very moist. The toffee sauce was poured over the top and tasted very sweet and very rich but at the same time, very indulgent. I received a small scoop of creamy, high quality ice cream with my dessert and between the three of us, we finished the lot! My sister ordered the cheesecake sponge which was a little different to a regular cheesecake. It was beautifully presented with squirty cream and strawberry sauce over the top. The cheesecake itself had a regular cheesecake filling - creamy vanilla and satisfying especially with the strawberry that topped it. The base was made of a light sponge rather than a biscuit base and this actually really worked and tasted divine! I would like to try the sweet pizza sticks on my next visit.
We were highly impressed by the service and the quality of food that we were served at EATaliano. My sister asked for the bill and paid by card. The bill came to around £35.00 which included two, three course meals, a two course meal and three drinks. I consider this fantastic value for money. We left a cash tip on the table. We were thanked for our visit and given mints on the way out which was a lovely touch.
We were very pleased with the food we had to choose from on the set menu but those who want to sample more authentic Italian dishes do have a great selection on the main menu. Overall we can highly recommend EATaliano in Hamilton. I will return with my fiance soon and my son.
Thanks for reading :)