La Cantina – Port of Spain (Trinidad & Tobago Restaurant Week 2018)
Day Two of my Restaurant Week sojourn found me within the walls of the 120+ year old building “Siegert’s House”, which also serves as the home of La Cantina, an authentic Italian Pizzeria with three locations across Trinidad & Tobago.
Although I don’t eat out regularly, there are certain establishments which can vary in quality from visit to visit. La Cantina has never been one of them though, so I was eager to delve deeper into their Restaurant Week offerings, especially since they had many vegetarian-friendly offerings within the various fixed-priced menus.
This time around I decided to share the experience with my old friend Joelle who I hadn’t spent time with in a few years. It’s crazy how life gets isn’t it? She’s one half of the local jewelry duo The Ornate Hollow so do check them out!
Upon arriving we were greeted by Cassandra who did an amazing job of taking our requests and making sure we had a wonderful experience. This sparkling white wine (Contessa Matilde Vino Frizzante Amabile Dell Emilia Lambrusco) was simply divine and I was so happy that our menu choices ended up with me getting a second bottle to carry home!
At first Joelle and I thought we would try two different menus to get a wider array of options however we both ended up choosing pizza options. Mine vegetarian, hers not. LOL. Little did we know that included in the order was complimentary bruschetta! Yay!
Definitely one of the best bruschettas I have had point-blank. Between the soft, slightly charred bread and the not-too-wet tomato topping, the flavors needed no additional topping. I particularly enjoyed the bursts of fresh herbal flavors that came through with each bite. Yum!
Then came the pizzas!
Joelle and I had both thought that the pizzas would have been personal size. So 4 seemed like a totally-not-crazy idea. Until these two LARGE mamas came out and we were told the other two could be kept in a warmer until we ready for them… Ready? Oh we were ready. We were born ready!
My first pizza (above, foreground) was the Contadina (eggplant, spinach, mushrooms, bell peppers & mozzarella). I love thin crust pizzas and this one didn’t disappoint! A soft and smoky crust from the wood burning oven, the thinnest smear of tomato sauce and mild mozzarella made the perfect muted backdrop for the vibrancy of the fresh vegetables to come through. Although the accompaniments of red pepper flakes, olive oil and parmesan cheese were on the table I never felt the need to turn to them to enhance either of my choices.
Choice #2: The Funghi (mushrooms, mozzarella). This narrowly edged out the Contadina as my favorite of the day! Everything about it screamed simplicity in that way that often belies that the less ingredients in a dish the higher quality the ingredient and technique need to be.
Although I had seen some online grumblings about the lack of dessert in the La Cantina restaurant menus by the end of the afternoon I could easily say that at this point dessert was not missed and would probably not have been as appreciated. As you can see from the below we had more than enough to take home with us, and that wasn’t including the second bottle of wine! If the menus take a similar format next year I would definitely recommend that you not let that ‘omission’ dissuade you. Also do keep in mind that the portions were quite generous. My order could easily have served two people!
Unfortunately I was unable to try any of the pasta options this time around… I think a return trip is soon due!
La Cantina – Port of Spain