2 The Square, Petersfield, GU32 3HJ
La Piazzetta may not have the classic trattoria look – its light, modern style shows off the building’s Tudor beams – but the team certainly honours Italy’s great culinary heritage and hospitality. Following fresh olives and a crisp house white – Italian, like most of the wine selection – I settled on antipasto misto followed by carbonara. My partner chose the set menu – priced £13.50 for two courses and £15.50 for three – opting for calamari then chicken in a fine, lemony sauce, with green beans, green salad and chips. The antipasto – choice pieces of Italian sausage and salami, prosciutto-wrapped artichoke hearts and baby mozzarella accompanied by seared homemade bread – was both pretty and tasty. Carbonara is always a good test of an Italian chef, and La Piazzetta’s is excellent. The smoked pancetta cut through the robust sauce, and the linguine was perfectly prepared. After moving on to a silky house red, we plumped for panna cotta and a sumptuous coffee gelato with rich chocolate sauce, smothered in crushed meringue. Thanks to La Piazzetta’s open kitchen guests can see their food as it is being cooked. The restaurant’s practise of freshly preparing each dish from locally sourced ingredients guarantees authentic Italian flavour. Having been there since 2007, the friendly team regards customers as family. Judging by the numbers tucking in on a quiet midweek evening, many treat this lovely little restaurant as their second home. And yes, they do pizza.