"We'll make you an offer you can't refuse", so says the placemats at Il Padrino. With a wide selection of cold cuts, hot pastas and sweet desserts from Bella Italia I certainly am not going to say no...
Eat at the Godfather's table
50-G-1, Wisma UOA Damansara,
Jalan Dungun, Damansara Heights,
50490 Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 03 2093 8596
Convenient location, swift service
“Let's check out Il Padrino tonight,” says a friend to me over Twitter one day. In my head, I honestly thought she was referring to another viewing of “The Godfather”. What else could it be? I must have been out of the foodie loop because apparently, Il Padrino is the new Italian restaurant on everyone's lips; it is owned by the same people who run Deutsches Haus, Gaucho Grill, Bavarian Bierhaus and Maredo's Steakhouse.
And guess what – it's not located in Changkat Bukit Bintang. Thank God, I was beginning to think that all of the Klang Valley's best Italian joints resided in that one neighbourhood. Yet another hurrah – no crazy traffic to deal with, and no rounding the area several times for a parking spot. On a Friday night, it's a blessing worth writing home (or in these days, blogging/tweeting) about.
As mentioned earlier, this restaurant is obviously inspired by the legendary '70s film. Their paper placemats bear the infamous quote, “We will make you an offer you can't refuse” and adorning their walls are black and white posters of Marlon Brando. Thankfully, the influences end there for service was not intimidating but rather, the waiters were attentive and really eager to help. My company liked the ambience too. It was classy and contemporary but we didn't feel the need to whisper our conversation or stifle a loud guffaw. We were comfortable immediately, and that definitely made our dining experience a lot more memorable!
We've heard that the salmon bruschetta is a pretty good appetizer but since they serve complimentary breads (with the obligatory olive oil + vinegar dip), we decided to pair it instead with their affettato misto. Not a decision we regret at all. Come on … a platter of cold cuts like parma ham, mortadella, salamI, coppa and speck? This is classic comfort food and not much can go wrong. The hams were sliced so delicately that they were almost translucent. I read on a blog that the bread they were served with was stale, but it was the complete opposite for us. They were fresh, warm and toasty. Mind you, it was close to 10pm when we dined.
On to the heavier stuff: the spinach ravioli seemed to be a favourite so we decided to give it a go. Loved the texture of the pasta which had a nice bite to it. The spinach and ricotta cheese filling was sinful – so dense, so savoury. The dish is served with butter sauce, sage and shavings of parmesan cheese. So bad but so good at the same time. We also ordered the Il Padrino pizza and would recommend it. It's got toppings of ham, tomato, basil on thin, crispy crust – very simple, but its minimalism allowed for the freshness of each ingredient to come through. Finally, we caved and had to order their roasted pork belly, which was a special. Served on a bed of mash with applesauce on the sides and garnished with basil, the pork was too dry for my Chinese tastebuds. I'm used to my decadent char siews and siew yokes with a good percentage of fat for that melt-in-your-mouth experience. My friend loved this though for its clean flavours.
We should've stopped ourselves but went for dessert anyway: tiramisu and pannacotta. The pannacotta was decent but I have to admit it doesn't compare to my favourite over at Nero Teca, or my friend's fave at Chiaroscuro. The tiramisu fared better, offering a pleasant balance between the espresso-soaked sponge fingers and the heavy mascarpone cheese. I gotta admit that at this point, we were probably too stuffed to truly appreciate their desserts!
Now's the question you ask at the end of every meal: would I go back? For sure. The food, according to what we had, was great and so was the service. Comfort level was high and conducive for conversation (music not too loud, lights not too bright or dim – yes I'm picky like that!). Il Padrino is definitely a place I'll come back to, with family and friends in tow.