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The first thing you notice if you wander into Sorrento for a true-blue Italian meal is the mat on which your plate is placed. Giving a wide berth to the bells and whistles of white-tablecloth dining, the restaurant places your plate on a rectangular sheet of butcher paper (the same paper used in Western nations to wrap meat sold at the butcher’s), that is printed with a map of Italy. The no-frills approach continues into the décor of the restaurant as well, where elaborate interiors have been swapped with statement items reminiscent of the boot-shaped country. For instance, the pickle and pasta counter is perched on a turquoise-toned Vespa, Italy’s hugely popular scooter brand while the restaurant’s white-washed exposed brick walls recall the scenic villages dotting the Italian shore.
The food served here is a hat tip to Neapolitan cooking and plays to the local palate owing to the heavy-handed use of tomatoes, fresh ingredients and buffalo milk cheese. What’s more, the Italian produce bounty is on full display at the restaurant, which has a glass-door fridge stocking everything from the grainy-textured Grana Padano cheese to the prized Parma ham.
Chef Luigi Ferraro, who belongs to the Calabria region of southern Italy and helms the restaurant, believes that the rustic yet authentic Italian cuisine served here appeals to Delhi’s food cognoscenti. According to him, Sorrento's menu is a celebration of southern Italian cuisine. One of the highlights of the cuisine is Salami, which features prominently on the menu as well. So you can nibble your way through a host of fine quality dry-cured meats including Prosciutto di Parma, Prosciutto di San Daniele, Culatello, Mortadella and more.
For a true taste of the essence of Italy, you can try the Ravioli stuffed with 24-month-aged Parmesan Brûlée and tossed with Wild Mushrooms and Asparagus. However, if you are a seafood connoisseur, do not miss the restaurant’s signature Spaghetti paired with Black Cod and Black Truffle.
The star attraction of this well-lit and cheerful space is a giant oven around which chefs can be seen buzzing at all times, either shaping perfect Ravioli or working the Pizza Dough. You must bear in mind that there is no rolling pin involved in making the pizzas here. They are always hand stretched by the chefs to create the perfect crust. It would be a crime, therefore, not to sample the restaurant’s freshly made pizzas, crafted in Neapolitan style with slightly chewy crusts. The scene stealer in the menu’s pizza section is the one topped with Buffalo Mozzarella, Prosciutto di Parma and Rocket Leaves.
Of course, no meal in Sorrento is complete without its plated desserts that look like detailed artworks. The Deconstructed Lemon Tart with Bergamot (a citrus fruit) and Nuts is a refreshing break from contemporary cloying confections while the sweet Cappuccino, Coffee and Vanilla Gelato is a dramatic play of textures on your palate.
It is said that the spirit of Italy is all about the pursuit of la dolce vita or the sweet life. Book with EazyDiner and get a taste of this sweet life as you enjoy a hearty meal at Sorrento!
Susmita Saha is a Delhi-based Features Writer. She has worked as an Assistant Editor at India Today and The Telegraph and writes on arts and culture, films, travel, food, architecture, design and various other lifestyle subjects. She has seriously itchy feet and plans to tick the world off her bucket list, one burger at a time.