Authentic Italian cuisine is bellissimo at Pomodoro Ristorante #DineJoziStyle @PomodoroRist

Authentic Italian cuisine is bellissimo at Pomodoro Ristorante #DineJoziStyle @PomodoroRist

If you’re looking for a taste of authentic Italian cuisine, you need to consider Pomodoro Ristorante in Morningside. Their menu defies stereotypical cliches to bring you an authentic Italian experience.

Stefano Mas, chef and owner, goes to great lengths to assure diners that if a dish is not true to its Italian roots – then it is honestly his own creation. When it comes to tradition, Stefano is a purist, but he’s not unknown to create a few dishes of his own. He usually comes out to speak to diners, so feel free to ask him questions. He’s passionate about food and travel – he’s equally passionate about sourcing ingredients and preparing dishes, so ask him anything.

He recommended we try the pizza with (Italian) sausage meat and artichokes – I ordinarily gravitate towards a blue cheese & bacon pizza, so this was left of centre for me, but we were sharing so I took one for the team. It was a heavenly fusion of velvety mashed potato and subtle sausage punctuated with acidic artichokes and creamy mozzarella. I’ve always been underwhelmed by mozzarella, but Stefano uses cows milk mozzarella – not the hipster buffalo mozzarella – and the flavour profile is quite pronounced. You’ll never want buffalo mozzarella again!

I ordered the pork belly with rosemary and garlic – always a winning combination for me, which was melt in your mouth satisfaction with a comforting herbal infusion. I generally don’t eat carbs, but after a taste of the squid ink taglioni with prawns & basil pesto, I swear that had there been bread on the table I would have mopped my friend’s plate clean, just to experience the essence of their prawns and basic. Someone ordered the gnochi with wild mushrooms and truffle paste (I can’t touch gnochi either) but they swooned over it.

They offer a selection of desserts, but I opted for the lightest option available – a delightfully citrus-y lemon sorbet – both a palate cleanser and perfectly sufficient to end the evening with a sweet.

Best memory of Pomodoro Ristorante? Enjoying the leftover pizza for breakfast the next morning – and I look forward to more!

Visit www.pomodororestaurant.co.za.

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