[Manchester, city centre] Don Giovanni

Don Giovanni appears amongst the “Top Ten Italian Restaurants” recommended by one Manchester listings website. It had to be worth a try. But it’s only gone to confirm that, if this is one of the best, then we just don’t do Italian very well in Manchester. There are a few notable exceptions in the metro area but this just isn’t one of them. It was OK, of course – a decent menu where everyone will find something to eat and efficient serving staff.

For one starter, mozzarella was encased in tomato flavoured breadcrumbs and deep fried. In itself, it was fine but it needed a little sauce of some sort to dunk it in. And the salad needed a dressing. The other starter was better – gnocchi with tomato sauce. It was one of a number of pasta, risotto, etc dishes available in starter or main course portion. Good idea. The gnocchi were light, the sauce was flavoursome and plentiful, mozzarella had melted into it. Nice

Lasagne was one of the pasta dishes that only came in main course size. It was a decent enough job – the sort that, on a good day, we could make at home just as well. Saltimbocca was fairly classic – thin escalopes of veal with Parma ham and sage (perhaps a little too much sage – the astringent flavour was quite pronounced). There was a little buttery, savoury sauce that worked well. A side dish of fried courgettes shreds also worked well.

Only one of us wanted dessert. Tiramisu is a standard order for us in any new restaurant. It’s a dish that we know how a good one should taste and this was just mediocre. It tasted of a generic “sweet” with no real hit from coffee or booze. And life is too short for mediocre.

Not one to rush back to, I’m afraid.

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