I have a friend who loved Italian food. I think she still does. Actually, she was crazy about everything that had Italian in it. And I think she still is. So much so that every time we went out in a group, she made sure we ended up in an Italian restaurant. We were so tired with this fetish of hers, that we just wanted to avoid Italian restaurants every time we went out. Somehow, that cuisine failed to appeal to us, to me. But she very was relentless, just like an Italian nonna. Little did I know then that it would change one fine day, that I would become like her!
I always knew that staying at home for long stretches of time is not going to be conducive to my waist line. And what do you know, my hunch proved right during those seven odd months of maternity leave.
I would get hungry every few hours. Or, sometimes just plain bored, then all I would think of to fight that boredom was, well, food. The result thus was that I would eat, eat and then eat some more. To make matters worse, the food shows on television didn’t help either. There are so many food shows on television, I tell you! There’s always somebody cooking something, enticing the foodie in you.
It was as if the food they prepared on screen was just for me, calling out to me, especially Italian food. Well, all the food shows somehow seemed to have that one common underlying theme. It was a conspiracy to make me drool over gawk-worthy Italian food. And, well, the rest, as they say, is history. I fell in love with this cuisine like I had never before. Italian food suddenly became my favorite.
What can I say? The food looked great, the cooks even better. Think, David Rocco! You get the idea, don’t you?
Pasta, Pizzas, Risottos, Breads, Cheese and more. I wanted to have it all. In fact, I even wanted to cook it all. Now that’s saying something when it comes from me. Italian food turned into this monkey on my back, something I couldn’t get off.
The attraction was so great that I had to have some good Italian food. And soon. The need was just too much, so much so that I got my sister in on it as well. She too started dreaming about spaghetti, like me. And one fine day, just like that, we found ourselves at Chianti.
A quick search on the internet revealed it was among the best Italian restaurants in Bangalore. And tell you what, the Internet wasn’t lying. I ended up loving the food so much that in less than a month, I went back there again. This time with my husband and daughter in tow. And just like the pleasure of seeing your first crush after the holidays, my second time there left me smiling yet again. Yes, the food was that good.
Located in one of the busiest streets in Koramangala, Chianti has a very minimalist interior, which is one of the first things I liked about it. Sophisticated and warm.
Italian all the way
The moment I was at my table, I knew they were serious about the fact that they are an Italian restaurant, not just a place which pretended to be one. Yes, because every table had a bottle of olive oil. Well, you and I both know what Olive Oil is to Italian food. So, this was the second thing I liked about this place. They seemed to know what they were doing.
Coming to the food. Well, in one word, it was awesome. The flavours were subtle, tasted great and the food looked enticing too. The presentation actually really appealed to the food gawker in me, a lot actually.
Options available were many among starters or antipasti, pasta, pizza, risottos, soups, desserts, baked and grilled dishes. In drinks, coffee, wine, sangria and a choice of mocktails too for the uninitiated.
Both the times I was there, I went for the Virgin Mojito and it was good, not that you could go wrong with a Mojito. But yes, once I stop nursing my daughter, I’m going to try their collection of wine too. Of course, I don’t understand wines much. But still.
The first time around we ordered Pollo Alla Parmigiana, chicken parmigiana served with steamed vegetables and a rich creamy mushroom risotto, and Spaghetti Agilo Olio. What can I say, they were both cooked to perfection.
This time, though, I tried their Piccata Di Pesee which was grilled Basa served in a shrimp sauce with julienne vegetables. One of the best I’ve had. The husband tried the Pollo Del Chianti, Grilled chicken breast cooked in creamy mushroom sauce and smoked cheese with vegetable ragu and mashed potato, recommended by our waiter. Another winner because he really liked it too.
Chianti really is one of the best Italian restaurants in town. But having said that, it’s still a tad expensive despite the good food. A meal for two, without any starters, desserts or soups, costs around Rs. 1500/-. So, yes, expensive certainly.
But did I mention that they give you a complimentary basket of bread with some delicious pesto sauce mixed with parsley oil? Well, that’s good too.
I recommend you directly order the mains because this basket of freshly baked bread works well as an appetiser. Unless you are really hungry of course.
You need to visit this place at least once but keep in mind that it’s going to be expensive.
The Nom Nom Scale
Cost: Rs. 1500 for 2 (approx)
Worth visiting: Yes