July 2016

PASTA & CUORE

pastaecuore.co.nz

Today’s Husky lunch adventures takes us to Pasta & Cuore (that’s Italian for “heart”) — home to (you guessed it) pasta that’s fresh and lovingly homemade. Upon entering you’ll see tortellini, tiny ring-shaped parcels wrapped in minced pork shoulder, parma ham and mortadella, formed with masterful hands. The cabinets host a variety of freshly-made pasta, sold by the gram to take home to make yourself (Friday dinners, sorted!) The place was pristine — while lilies, mismatched white are and cardboard menus give the place an offhandedly pleasant feeling, like you’ve come home. We were ushered to the room upstairs, a good wintery alternative to the courtyard; everything was painted white save for the framed diary pages lined up on the walls. We imagine it’d be a beautiful space for lunch meetings, or customised for intimate gatherings or showers. Service was attentive — we were asked if the heater needed to be turned up (good move) as we paged through the extensive menu, each section explaining the origins and definitions of their floury craft. We particularly enjoyed the exaltation on the first page: “Spaghetti bolognese doesn’t exist”(!) Don’t worry, you won’t find the overly creamy and bloating portions of Portofino here — instead, think humble mouthfuls of perfectly al dente pieces, accented with simplistic but by-no-means exquisite flavours (aromatic olive oils, organic tomato, or clear, clear chicken broth). It’ll leave you ample room for dessert (we sadly had to miss out), but this place (and all the accents) had us dreaming of Italy, the real thing.

Louise had the carbonara and a kawakawa tonic. She said “Loved the history and storytelling of the heart and origins of the restaurant. Was slightly overwhelmed by the menu (so many words) but thoroughly enjoyed my well-seasoned and perfectly al dente carbonara.”

Katie had the tortellini in free-range chicken broth and a kawakawa tonic. She said “I’m not usually a pasta person, but this place I would go again. Authentic, homey, clean flavours!”

Mel had the semolina gnocchi served with sautéed vegetables and a kawakawa tonic . She said “I love the Itailan hospitality and service, “magnifico!” The food was so obviously fresh and homemade, mmmmm! The servings were modest but it really made you savour the taste, very nice with a touch of posh.”

Joe had the tortelloni and a kawakawa green tea. He said “Quality homemade pasta, but portion sizes a bit on the low side compared to more conventional café offerings.”

Emilie had the tagliatelle with avocado, red onion, extra virgin olive oil and grated parmigiano reggiano and a kawakawa tonic. She said “Loved their well cooked pasta noodles, full of extra virgin olive oil scent & flavour.”

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Overall Experience