Saturday, 19 March 2016

Porro Review

It was out ninth anniversary last week. We booked an early meal at Porro in Llandaf, Cardiff. It's an "Italian-ish" restaurant that specialises in Italian food and Italian inspired Welsh food. Porro is the Italian word for leek, the national Welsh vegetable. We've been there before for my birthday last year where we massively over indulged and drank cocktails, wine, prosecco and ate copious amount of food including the best duck breast I've ever had. No exaggeration. This time there was more prosecco on the table for us when we arrived. This is not something that they do for everyone, but we happen to live next door to the owners. Win. Also, this is the best prosecco I've ever had. No exaggeration.

To start with we had a mix of three dishes that we shared. A salt cod pate with sour dough which wasn't anywhere anywhere near as salty or fishy as I thought it might be. It was actually very light, easy eating. We also had two cheese dishes. A burrata, which is a soft mozzarella like cheese from Southern Italy. This one was covered in herbs and fresh oil with shavings of fennel. Really light and fresh and the herbs brought everything together. The other cheese dish was gnudi. Something I hadn't come across before. It's essentially like a gnocchi but made with cheese instead of potato. This one was in contrast to the burrata, very rich and creamy. Absolutely lovely and a great find. Will be looking this one up in the future.

For my main course I had lamb. It came with broccoli, toasted almonds and chilli, served on a bed of creamy mash potato and a delicious gravy (posh people might call this a jus). The mix of the perfectly seasoned broccoli with toasted almonds and chilli was amazing. Something I've not tried before. The lamb itself was the best lamb I've ever had. No exaggeration. Perfectly pink in the middle. Seared on the outside with great seasoning. Great combinations of flavours and textures. I could've eaten that lamb forever. I don't understand how you cook meat like that. The duck and the lamb on both occasions, cooked perfectly. And the quality of the meat makes a huge difference too.

For pudding, I ordered off the menu. Something I'd seen them post on Twitter during the week. Burnt banana served with hazelnut brittle and salted caramel ice cream and sauce. Oh wow. A taste sensation! I'm not big on sweet things, so when something is a little less sweet or even salty, it's great for me. This is a classic taste combination, but if it ain't broke, don't fix it.

We also had a bottle of chianti reserva and a limoncello. I've gotta admit that the chianti wasn't what I'm used to. We usually only buy cheap wine haha. This one had a lot going on. I did enjoy it, but last time we went for the montepulciano. Sweeter and easier to drink and if you're like me and only usually drink cheap plonk, I'd recommend this over chianti. Perhaps if we had something a bit richer off the menu, the chianti would have been a better choice. We didn't go for cocktails this time because we had work the next day, but last time we did indulge and they awesome. Great recommendations from the staff too. I guess they've had enough time to sample them all.

The restaurant itself is located in Llandaf village, a stones throw away form the Cathedral. It's a beautiful location and quite romantic, although could just as easily be bromantic. The interior helps with the atmosphere too. Sophisticated, but relaxed. The staff are incredibly friendly but not overbearing. They are very knowledgeable about the menu and can give good recommendations. The soundtrack apparently has been the same since they opened last year and put together by a guy called Tom. The satff therefore are a little bit bored of the music but Tom has a great taste. We entered to The Smiths and were treated to the likes of Beirut and Billy Brag. Perfect tunes.

Here comes the bit about the price. It's expensive. No bones about it. It's not a place I can go to often although I'd love to eat there every day if I could. Four courses and quite a lot of drinks set us back about £100. It was our anniversary and we indulged. But my God is it worth it! Seriously if you haven't been, you should go. Now. It's perfect for a special occasion. They will not let you down.

Food is my hobby. I'd eat out every day if I could. I do eat out a lot, probably too much (I'm going to a local bakery for breakfast now and off to the Plymouth Arms in St. Fagans for tea!). I've been to many restaurants in  Cardiff and elsewhere and can say, hand on heart that Porro is the best restaurant I've ever been to that serves the best food I've ever eaten. No exaggeration.

I had all the intentions of taking pictures of my food to show you, but the moment took me and it was in my belly before I even realised. Oops.

Check out sample menus and book a table at their website.

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