Before going away, I did some quick research into places to go for dinner, as the majority of restaurants were towards the city centre - some 2.5km from our hotel - and one place stood out amongst the rest: QuattroVenti. Luckily, once in Palermo, we were able to reserve a table via the booking app on Trip Advisor, making it so much easier than calling, or failing to book and being turned away! I'm glad we did book though, being a Saturday night, it was busy!
The restaurant prides itself on fresh ingredients and comfort food, with a lot of the options on the menu being described as "slow food" (nope, I still don't know what that means either!) and having been unable to find a translated menu online in the lead up to the evening, I was very much looking forward to seeing what would be on offer.
First things first - the restaurant is absolutely beautiful. The decor is really modern and sophisticated, yet the ambience is almost that of a typical trattoria. This is perfect for couples dining, as it has that really cosy level of intimacy, without having the tables so close together you're intruding others. As you enter the restaurant, there's an extensive bar down one side; while the restaurant is split into two sections - one of which must be group friendly. I immediately felt comfortable, the staff's English was almost perfect, with a great level of service to match.
As well as the a la carte menu, there were also two taster menus: a land-based option and a sea-based option, with optional wine pairings, should you wish. These needed to be ordered for the whole table and with about four courses on offer, we gave this a miss. It was reasonably priced though, when comparing to the a la carte menu.
I let Ashley choose the wine and I can't remember what it was exactly, but it was a white wine, which wasn't too dry and complemented our choice of meals perfectly. And it's a good job we didn't order starters, as there was no chance of going hungry. It wasn't long before two cute wooden boxes arrived to the table - one with breadsticks and the other, assorted bread rolls. Because I don't eat white bread, I only had two breadsticks - however, I could not resist when another waiter brought some pizza rolls over. They were just too good to resist: fresh dough, chopped tomatoes (that actually tasted like tomato!) and topped with herbs. Thankfully, my dinner was carb-free...
I chose the fish of the day, which I honestly could not translate - but it was a meaty fish, similar to a tuna steak. It was so fresh and came served in an aromatic broth with pak choy, red peppers & chilli and coriander cress. It was such a simple and light dish, executed well and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Ashley chose the risotto, which was packed full of vegetables including artichoke, broad beans and peas, with ricotta and fragranced with orange. It was basically summer on a plate - really vibrant in colour. There were a lot more fish options than meat, so be aware if that's not your thing!
Once our empty plates were taken away and we decided on viewing the dessert menu, a plate of amaretti biscuits and almond biscotti were served - my favourite! It was a lovely touch and the only restaurant we ate at that provided little extras - well worth the cover charge, in my opinion! We both decided we couldn't manage a dessert each and luckily, we both had our eyes on the same one: the apple tart. Layers of pastry and apple merged to form a really beautiful looking flower and the tart was served in a pool of cinnamon custard and topped with vanilla ice cream. The dessert wasn't too rich and the cinnamon custard was absolutely heavenly, just thin enough. As much as I enjoyed it, there's no way I could have managed a whole bowl to myself.
In all, it was a really lovely evening: good food, wine, ambience and company - certainly worthy of its praise online. I think I would go as far as saying it was my favourite meal in Palermo and the restaurant just suited me, if that makes sense?
Love, Lucy xx