Cibo molto buono!

When we first heard about Belcibo — an Italian eatery that was “100 per cent vegetarian” — we had our doubts. Why was an Italian joint going green? When we reached the dimly lit blink-and-you’ll-miss-it, our apprehensions were further heightened. But then our food arrived.

The Belcibo Chef Special Pizza is piled high with possibly every vegetarian topping

The Spicy Tortia Soup (Rs 79) is a creamy, spicy tomato soup that helped work up our appetite. We also ordered the Jalapeno and Cream Cheese Bread (Rs 89), which was a twist on the usual Garlic Bread. The bread was toasted to perfection and was loaded with cheese and bits of spicy jalapenos.

The pasta was cooked al dente in the Penne in Cream Cheese and Garlic

From the Sandwich section, we ordered the Three Sandwich, a layered sandwich stuffed with spicy potato and lots of veggies, including jalapeno, zucchini and bell peppers (Rs 89). The filling sandwich was served with a mixture of mayo and ketchup and had more veggies than cheese, which made it a healthier choice than the usual cheesy sandwich. The Kiwi Guava and Black Current Raspberry (Rs 79 for both) coolers made for interesting flavour combinations, but tasted slightly synthetic.

The jalapeno pieces added tangy bursts of flavour to the cheese in the Jalapeno and Cream Cheese Bread

How far from Italy?
An Italian restaurant with Lebanese on its menu? Weird, but we thought we’d check it out anyway. The Lebanese wrap (Rs 89) was stuffed with spiced cottage cheese, which despite being juicy left a bitter aftertaste. The star of the dish, however, was the garlic cream dip that accompanied it, and we ensured that we licked every last bit off our fingers. What’s an Italian eatery worth, if it can’t dole out good pizza, right! So, we asked for the Belcibo Chef Special Pizza (Rs 199).

The tiny Italian eatery in Lower Parel has functional interiors and could do with a few bright lights. Pics/ Satyajit Desai

What’s special about this pizza, you ask! It has every possible vegetarian topping on it: mushroom, broccoli, zucchini, corn, bell peppers, jalapeno, olives and tomatoes (phew)! The thin-crust valiantly supported all the toppings without turning soggy. We suggest skipping the starters and opting for the pizza instead, as it makes for quite a substantial meal in itself.

The Penne in Cream Cheese and Garlic (Rs 149) (you can choose a different pasta, if you like) was well cooked. The garlic helped add a subtle flavour to the creamy white sauce, which would have tasted rather bland otherwise. Thumbs up! Future plans include a non-vegetarian food section. We hope that they manage to keep the yum factor high on that as well.

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