Step through the doors of Pasta Cibo, away from the hubbub of Harpenden’s Station Road, and you’ll instantly feel like you have been transported to a trattoria in Italy. The warm and cosy interior is adorned with a unique assortment of trinkets and photos, creating a personal, individual space that very much befits the comforting Italian fare served up here. Pasta Cibo’s cuisine is rustic, simple, flavourful and fresh. With over 34 years of culinary experience under their belts, the chefs certainly know what they are doing when it comes to creating great Italian food from time-honoured family recipes.
Traditionalists will be pleased to find a selection of classic pasta dishes and pizzas, while more adventurous diners will find plenty to tempt on the ever-changing specials board. We began with the highly recommended bread-crumbed, deep-fried medallions of gooey mozzarella to start, and could understand why it is one of Pasta Cibo’s most popular starters. The antipasti platter of olives, artichokes, cured meats, mozzarella, tomato and salad dressed in rich balsamic vinegar also packed a punch. We were equally impressed by the pollo alla valdostana main – pan-fried chicken breast with Parma ham, mozzarella and a rich tomato sauce – as well as the crespelle alla fiorentina, a fantastic vegetarian dish of rolled pancakes with spinach, mozzarella and ricotta cheese in a tomato sauce. Rich, boozy tiramisu rounded off our authentic Italian experience in a suitably indulgent fashion.