Tuesday 8.30 P.M
Thank you all for your kind words and encouragement. I hope my letter got to the Messrs Restauranteur, I patiently await their response(s). For those that missed my letter to Mr Restauranteur please click on this link. I have gotten a number of mails asking why most of the restaurants I review are on the Island, I have done quite a few on the mainland. I am open to suggestions on places to review on the mainland. Proper restaurants only please i.e no fast food places.
I had heard a lot about the restaurants at Intercontinental Hotel in Victoria Island. This day seemed like a good opportunity to explore so we ended up at Milano Restaurant. This is the Italian restaurant on the second floor of the hotel. Milano Restaurant is a well laid out dining room that seats about 60 guests. The furnishing is quite contemporary and elegant with well laid out tables. Most outstanding piece here is the champagne wall or shall we call it a divider? It had almost unending rows of premium bottles of champagne. The view is quite lovely- overlooking the lobby area.
Once seated the waiter brought the menu. E be like say I go need a language instructor to order food here. The food was written in Italiano so you would have to try to pronounce the names to order. I shan’t gree. With the help of the waiter, I ordered the meals. I asked the waiter if they had any house wines, he said yes , he offered to show me the bottle. Unfortunately they did not have the rose I wanted. I opted for white wine. He brought the bottle to show me before pouring but he did not pour it in my presence. There was no price for the house wine , I begin wonder oh. Should I be worried?
After about twenty minutes, the waiter came with the appetizer- an assortment of Italian breads and dips. The breads were a breath of fresh air. They were fresh! We had bread sticks, sourdough bread and a “baguetty” like one I didn’t know. The breads were served with the “traditional ” olive oil and balsamic vinegar dip, the crushed olives dip and a salsa dip. I have been told several times by an Italian chef and a few culinary school classmates that dipping bread in Olive oil with balsamic vinegar is not a traditional Italian practice , they also said that serving bread before pasta is not typical of Italians. The reason they gave was that balsamic vinegar ruins the rich taste of their highly priced olive oil and also that eating bread before a meal ruins the appetite. The Italians said so , no be me oh! And errmm, some of you might be wondering why they didn’t just give us butter, The Italians don’t do bread and butter…they say. Let’s just leave that story for another day, I learnt that in quite an embarrassing way…..
The entrees came after about forty – five minutes, in my books that is forever. First up was the Petto Di Pollo Ripieni (N 7,900-$48 ), this was described as chicken stuffed with liver pate served with truffle whipped potatoes. I subbed the truffle whipped potatoes with baked potatoes. …..as my Ghanian friends say. bluffo(sp)…. big grammar. In my opinion, this was a basic meal with a fancy name. When it came I was not wowed. Yet again, the term -value for money comes into play. I have had better Italian food. The chicken came with some sort of gravy I could not place. It was basically stuffed grilled chicken with baked potatoes served with vegetables. It was quite nice but was it commensurate to the price paid for it? No.
The second entree was the Carre’d agnello con crosta d’erbe (N8900- $55) . Hmmmn, I will buy you one plate of Ofe nsala and pounded yam if you can pronounce this right…. that’s if you had no prior knowledge of Italiano.
The menu described this as baked rack of lamb with whole grain mustard and herb crust and truffle whipped potatoes. This entree had three chunks of lamb chops with mashed potatoes , vegetables and the same sauce that came with the first entree. I was not impressed that it was the same sauce that was served with the chicken and the lamb….. the sauce seemed a bit watered down too. If you read my post regularly, you would have noticed that I don’t quite fancy breaded foods, this was no different. I painstakingly scraped off the breaded crust before eating the lamb. It was nicely done, well seasoned and tender. The truffle whipped potato was mashed potatoes with a smoother and creamier texture, very nice. It tasted too smooth and rich to have been from freshly mashed potatoes, I suspected that it was boxed mashed potatoes. It was well executed so it didn’t really matter.
The dessert menu had three desserts on offer. One of which is my favorite dessert ever- Tiramisu. I absolutely love this dessert. but I had to borrow myself a brain when I saw the price. It was a whopping N 3,800 ($23), Make una no worry, the juju no catch me. It had better be a whole tray of Tiramisu for that price. I jejely nursed my glass of wine after my meal.
I observed that the menu was not that extensive. I was hoping to see a variety of pasta meals especially ravioli, seafood and cured meats but the menu was in trickles of these, in my opinion, it lacked the originality and staples of a typical Italian restaurant.
P.S : The glass of house wine caused N 2,300… The wine was called San Valentin…. Lagos na wa. Way overpriced if I may say so.
For a glass of “house white wine” and 2 entrees , we paid (N19,850- $121). did anyone just scream blue murder. Well I did. It brings me to one conclusion. Would I be right to say that in Lagos, we actually pay for ambience and not the meal per se? Help a sister out here please.
MY SCORE CARD
Layout/ Ambience / aesthetics -9
Quality of food-7
Value for money 6
Customer Service – 7
MILANO RESTAURANT (Intercontinental Hotel) 52, Kofo Abayomi street, Victoria Island, Lagos | 01-2366666
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