Location: SLN Terminus, Gachibowli – Kondapur Road
Meal: Dinner (with wifey)
Serafina is an international chain of Italian restaurants with more than 30 outlets in seven countries, and comes as a new addition to the already packed Italian gourmet space in Hyderabad. Located on the third level of the newly constructed SLN Terminus mall near Kondapur, the restaurant has perfect ambiance for a night with family or friends. I dropped in with wifey for a tasting session a couple of weeks ago, and we settled at a cozy table on the outdoor seating area overseeing the bustling Friday traffic.
Having just returned from a trip from Italy, their menu looked very familiar. There were a number of options to choose from, and the greedy foodie in me wanted to try a bit of everything. So we asked the on-floor manager to bring us small portions of their best offerings.
We were to start with a small portion of the tomato, basil and mozzarella antipasti and their D. Chopra salad, which I read is named as tribute to author Deepak Chopra who happens to be a regular at their NY outlet. While we were waiting for the traditional first course, the bread basket was placed on our table.
Served along with Olive Oil and Balsamic Vinegar in a grape cruet, their breads very fresh and irresistibly soft. I gulped down three pieces even before I realized so.
The antipasti and insalate looked very appetizing. The mozzarella was fresh and went along with tomato and basil; and the D. Chopra salad which had mixed greens, pears, cherry tomatoes, corn, asparagus, and walnuts salad with lemon vinaigrette dressing was alright. As appetizing as it looked, these proved that I’m not a ghaas-phoos salad eating guy!
To go along with our meal, we ordered a Virgin Pina colada and an Orange Mojito. The Pina colada was creamy, coconutty and just perfect, and the Mojito was not bad either. Forget wine, these drinks kept us satisfied.
Ordering the main-course was the tricky part; all of their pizza’s seemed interesting, and I honestly wanted a piece of everything. We finally asked for the Al Porcini pizza, Tagliolini di Portofino and Lasagne. The Manager suggested we also try the Paglia e Fieno pasta, and we obliged.
They couldn’t do a small version of the pizza, so we got the full size one and it looked yum. The crust was perfectly baked, and the cream sauce was finger licking good. I would have preferred a little more flavouring; thankfully we had oregano and chilli flakes were at our disposal. Good stuff!
Next came the home-made Tagliolini in pesto sauce and this tasted equally delicious. The pesto sauce was strong and creamy, and the pine nuts added nice crunch.
The Lasagne was a little disappointing compared to the meal so far, for the sauce was too thin and there was too much eggplant. We couldn’t taste anything but for the eggplant, not even the cheese.
The recommended Fettuccine pasta didn’t really live up to our expectations either. It was a little too dry and not something I’d try again.
And then, it was time for the desserts; we asked for a Chocolate Mousse while the Manager recommended the Tiramisu.
The mousse turned out to be excellent; it was as good as it could get. Creamy, chocolaty yet subtle. The white chocolate wafer was yum. Toothsome!
Their Tiramisu came without liquor, and while it tasted alright, I wasn’t really happy for the mascarpone cheese didn’t really feel perfect. I’ve just tasted the best Tiramisu at its origins, that’s probably the reason why I couldn’t relish this so much.
Overall, a good meal with the pizza and the mousse being clear winners. They could add more variety to their starters for there wasn’t anything more than bread or cheese. While the authenticity is being maintained, I’m guessing not many folks would appreciate it for what finally matters along with the food taste is the pricing. While they are more or less spot-on on the taste front, the exorbitant pricing is something one needs to get used to (a single item on their menu could cost you thousand bucks!). Nevertheless, it definitely deserves a visit; perfect ambiance, courteous service and good food is what awaits you here.
Meal for 2: N/A (it’s expensive!)