Chef Paolo Moran, the next generation of Amici owners takes over the kitchens after a year in Italy bringing with him a fresh approach to the restaurant. I haven’t been to Amici in quite a while so was quite surprised at the new look, brighter and more colorful. Chef Paolo has added 5 new dishes to the menu while retaining the old favorites.
We started the lunch with Spinach Artichoke (P285). Parmesan crusted pizza dough served with a spinach artichoke dip. A good shareable starter to get your taste buds going.
Bacon and Cheese Gnocchi (P368). This is the first of the new dishes and it was really good. The house-made gnocchi had a good qq texture that we really enjoy. The sauce is composed of Asiago and Parmesan cheeses topped with bacon and basil and is well coated in each piece of gnocchi.
Spicy Italian Sausage Pizza (P468). If you don’t like spicy food, pick another pizza variant. This one has Italian sausage, Asiago cheese, cream, red peppers, caramelized onions, and a side of honey to drizzle over. Even with the honey drizzle, this is still very spicy. I think I had half a slice only because I ingested a bunch of red peppers in my bite.
Seafood Diablo (P378).Clams, mussels and scallop in a creamy tomato sauce with a spicy kick by way of chili oil and chili flakes. This was spicy but nothing compared to the pizza. I had more than I should on this one because the right level of spiciness made me want to eat more.
Pasta Nero (P398). A pomodoro sauce based enhanced with squid ink then drizzled with garlic aioli and topped with crunchy calamari. The pomodoro sauce base balances out the squid ink flavors while the garlic aioli gives it a creamy finish. The squid rings contrasts the smooth and creamy pasta with a crunchy texture.
The Italian Burger (P368). A mix of beef and Italian sausage patty plus Italian seasoning make this a unique burger. There are also fried onion rings, cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomato in between the buttered brioche bun plus potato wedges on the side. You wouldn’t expect to find a burger at an Italian restaurant but this one delivers the burger experience but with an Italian flavor.
If you want something meatier then you might want to try the Bistecca Striploin Steak (P795). A decent and well priced steak cooked to your specification and served with two sides of your choice.
Finish off with something cold from next door, Matcha Gelato at Caramia should entice matcha addicts. Creamy yet still has the matcha flavor that people will enjoy.
The five new dishes gives the Amici menu a new and fresh flavor injection and I foresee even better things as Chef Paolo adds more of his touches.