Food: La Ballerina Italian, Covent Garden



La ballerina in Covent Garden is a nice little independent Italian restaurant right next to the Royal Opera House with a lovely pre-theatre and three course lunch menu for both meat eaters and vegetarians too.

Ad and I have been there a few times for their in-expensive, generously portioned slice of Italy. Their menu is small but has plenty of options ( I always think smaller menus are winners) and has great  starters, main and cheeky puddings for both lunch and dinner. An elderly couple sat next to us in the restaurant were having an amazing looking pudding (Next time we go in we're definitely having pudding!) following a starter, drinks and main; you could tell they were regulars, coming in for their weekly outing of dinner and a show. I hope that's me and Ad one day. Too cute.


Starter: Tomato and mozzarella.
Opting for the starter, main and coffee deal at £15 each: we chose the tomato, basil and mozzarella  for our starters, followed by vegetable lasagne for me and mushroom pizza for Ad, then two straight up strong black coffees for me and my mega coffee addiction.

Starter

Tomato and mozzarella: A clean and simple starter packed with natural flavours with the addition of vinaigrette, which was a great way to cleanse the palate for the Italian feast to come!  I adore buffalo mozzarella, paired with beef tomatoes and basil; it's heaven in a starter. Sometimes the simplest things are the best.


Main 

Main course: Vegetable lasagne.

Arriving in a big Italian dish, the creamy vegetable lasagne was piping hot, with cheese bubbling on top. The rich cheese and tomato sauce soaked the different Italian veg within the dish and large, thick pasta sheets made it the traditional lasagne we all know and love. When the waiter arrived to add extras to my meal, I had some parmesan and cracked black pepper to further flavour mine.


After visiting Rome, Ad and I have been massive fans of one topping pizza or plain pizza. Over in Italy they typically only have one or at most two toppings on a pizza, letting you focus on just one or a few flavours rather than trying to pile it all on and taste everything all at once. A simple choice of a mushroom, thin crust pizza with pepper and parmesan, sliced in two; half for him, half for me was pizza perfection on a plate.


Main course: Mushroom pizza.

I'm a big foodie and thank goodness Ad is too. We always split our meals half and half in restaurants, not because its romantic, but because we want to taste it all!

Half and half
Our evening of Italian was delicious! Totally yummy. The third course and to top the meal off, a nice and hot black americano. 

Coffee

Americano, no milk

Simple and strong.
La ballerina is a no frills, super located accessible restaurant with a plentiful menu full of flavour.  The service is ok, with attentive staff. There's no need to book, but the earlier, the better. It's the ideal place for a spot of pre show dinner or post matinee supper.  



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