Casa Di Lolita has recently opened next to my house. It's an Italian concept by the same owners of Lola. In fact, it's a smaller versions of Lola, the popular meat restaurant nestled on the peaks of Naas, Bickfaya.
It's an old house on the highway, which used to be "Sleep Comfort" home accessories shop. Now transformed into a restaurant, Casa Di Lolita is the first restaurant of the kind in the area. It was a calm Sunday evening and I decided to go up with my family. There was no one there except us. I was looking forward to a calm evening with my close ones.
Go up a couple stairs into a beautiful terrace which is unfortunately just a few meters from the highway. A large glass door opens into a rectangular restaurant with a bar.
You'll see a stone arcade, lights pending from the ceiling, rugged wooden tables and relaxing chairs as well as other nice details like the mirrors and wine barrels... We chose to sit on a round table at the end, while light soothing music plays in the background. It was a cozy ambiance.
Although the first impression was good, the waiters seemed a bit tense. A smile please.
It seems like a the waiters were on a training tonight. There were discussions in the corner before approaching in pair to take the order. One memorizes and the other writes. The main waiter knows the whole menu by heart...
On the menu, printed in a black paper is a selection of soups, sharing plates, appetizers, hot starters, meat and chicken, wood fire pizza, pasta, oven baked pasta and drinks. It seems like a blend of Italian and French, printed in French.
Dinner is served:
- Fried seafood mix of calamari rings and some shrimp served with light guacamole dip. Lightly crunchy, enjoyably chewy served in a bowl plate. They look and feel fresh.
- Mushroom fricassé, a plate you just order. A bowl with a pain de campagne topped with a fried egg and a cocktail of mini mushrooms cut in quarters. Slit has a certain delicacy to it, a molten bread, a juicy egg and a mix of well cooked marinated mushrooms in their crepe sauce.
- The rustique pizza, made of tomato sauce, goat cheese, sundried tomatoes, olives, thyme and roquette leaves. Well balanced with a thick round border, a watery sauce, juicy dried tomatoes, molten chunks of goat cheese on a rustic style dough. It's not soggy and not crunchy, something in between that makes it good enough. But the borders are not crunchy enough nor tender. It needs more baking time, just a minute more.
- Buffalo salad served in a round plate, one ball of buffala mozzarella cut in half served on a bed of pesto and basil cream, sweetened with balsamic and decorated with pizza dough that tastes like a Saj bread; shouldn't it be more crunchy?
- Risotto cepe served in a bowl looks like Cerelac (kids food). Rice cooked aldente, sliced of mushroom, Parmesan shredded on top in a mix that's a bit over watery. Good but honestly the look of it blocks your appetite. I waited a bit for it to cool down, cheese melted more... I added a bit of pepper and enjoyed it.
- Seafood Linguini: A deep bowl this time, topped with linguini pasta, a load of calamari rings and mussels in tomato sauce. A good one despite the prominent taste of garlic which is disturbing.
- Ravioli aux cepes is very good. Loved the cheese, the aldente cooked pasta, the flavors but again its needs more pepper.
Now for dessert:
- A mouthwatering pain perdu. A thick slice of bread, caramelized on one side and sparked in milk, butter and sugar bathing in caramel sauce and topped with an ice cream from OrsoBianco. Well done, beautifully textured and puts a smile on the face.
- The tiramisu served in a mason jar can be enjoyed by three or even four persons. Even better than the pain perdu, the Tiramisu is a dream come true. A tiramisu cream over a juicy slice of bread so cakes in juice. A smooth coffee cream caresses the palate, a spoon and then another, I personally couldn't stop.
- Portions are generous.
- Food is good, good enough.
- The mood is soothing and enjoyable.
- Desserts are exquisite.
- If smoking is not allowed inside, why cheapen the decor with stainless low quality ashtrays?
- Light around the space has too many shadows, bad for this decade's photo craze. I couldn't take good photos for my Instagram.
- Service: decide on which side to stand, left or right but you can't stand between two people and throw cutlery from side to side or serve water to go quicker.
- For the love of God, please do not throw spoons in plates. They look awful and unappetizing. Look at my risotto.
- Resine plates? Seriously? All places could have been better presented.
- Work more on service details.
- A smile adds value,
- Serving on one side,
- The pepper mill should arrive with the plates
- Parmesan should be on the table since everyone asked for pasta
- Holding the plates with your thumb inside them is a massacre to the restaurant industry.
- Water service was interrupted. Anyway water bottles shouldn't have been on the table but aside.
- Spoons should be served at the table and not inside the plate.
- Table napkins are needed, not the white tissue ones.
I'm happy to have a good restaurant close to home where dinner is served with style and food is prepared with dedication. Enjoyable Italian dishes cooked by Lola's chef himself.