Sian Griffiths and Hannah Burton find out what delights Prezzo has to offer this festive season…
We Brits like to think that we’ve nailed Christmas food but having spent quite a bit of time in Italy, I have to admit that they know what they’re doing in the kitchen come Christmas morning too. They do things slightly differently to us for the big day, but in my opinion you can pretty much always trust the Italians when it comes to food (maybe less so when it comes to politics…). Prezzo’s Christmas offerings showcase Italy’s festive best, so it was with much excitement that Sian and I went to check it out.
Prezzo’s decor makes it a wonderful choice for a Christmas meal out, with warm, on-trend lighting and stylish seating areas. We visited Bristol’s Anchor Square venue and were really impressed with how chic the restaurant is, especially considering how reasonable the menus are. The classic dinner menu consists of a choice of three courses and a glass of Prosecco, while the premium menu costs just £24.95.
I started with mozzarella in carrozza – gooey delicious mozzarella coated in crisp breadcrumbs served with a fresh tomato sauce on the side. It’s just not Christmas without cheese – hell, in my family it barely counts as a meal at all without cheese – so this was the perfect starter for me. Seeing the generous portion sizes I did start to regret my outfit choice though, and I was right to – my red dress gave me a rather fetching Father Christmas belly by the end of the meal. Sian started proceedings with the crab cakes with garlic mayonnaise and a side salad: ‘They certainly didn’t skimp on the filling and, importantly, there was more fish than potato, while the breadcrumb coating was crisp and golden. A very good start!’
For the main course it was always going to be the king prawn risotto for me. Large meaty prawns rested on top of a bed of risotto comprised of oak-roasted salmon fillet and leeks in a creamy saffron sauce. The salmon had a subtle smoky flavour that infused with the saffron in a light but satisfying way; to say this dish was exquisite would be an understatement.
Sian says: ‘Although I liked the sound of the pizzas, I finally plumped for the roasted duck leg (it’s a bit more Christmassy after all). Served with a smooth and creamy rosemary mashed potato, green beans, butternut squash and mushrooms, the meat was cooked beautifully and the drizzle of red wine jus was lovely.’
Though by this point I’d almost definitely eaten enough, I couldn’t resist a dessert – it is Christmas, after all. I went for the milk chocolate fudge cake, which was finished with crushed chocolate brownie, and, as desserts go, this was a real winner. The cake was rich, moist and incredibly indulgent, served with vanilla ice cream that was refreshing and full of flavour.
For Sian, when it came to dessert, the choice was simple. ‘I’d been eyeing up the chocolate orange truffle slice all night and, although it was a little heavy after two hearty courses, I loved the richness of the truffle. It certainly satisfied my after-dinner sweet tooth.’
The variety of fare and reasonable prices on Prezzo’s Christmas menus mean that it’s a great choice for a work do, but the intimate setting and top-notch service mean that it’s equally well-suited to a family meal out during the festive season. The food was wonderful, as was the deliciously light Prosecco, so I’m looking forward to returning with friends in the near future – Prezzo is the place to go for an affordable festive treat.
Sian’s verdict? ‘Overall, both in terms of the venue and the food, Prezzo definitely exceeded my expectations – the setting was refined yet unpretentious and I thoroughly enjoyed every dish. The menu was surprisingly generous, too, given that it’s the Christmas offering – it represented excellent value for money.’
Visit Prezzo’s website for more details of their festive offering.