Food Observations

A blog for eaters

Archive for the tag “italian”

The Godfather

Outstanding spaghetti carbonara at The Godfather! One of San Diego’s finest Italian restaurants.

Mamma Ramona’s

A fairly institutional chicken parmigiana at Mamma Ramona’s. Not among the best parm I’ve had but it was decent nonetheless. I think I’ll stick with their outstanding cannelloni.

Olive Garden

Tasty Chicken & Shrimp Carbonara at OG in Santee, CA! Not really a traditional version of carbonara but I still order it. Maybe once every five years or so.

Mamma Ramona’s

I finally checked out the new Mamma Ramona’s recently for dine-in! Upon entering I was immediately struck by the interior remodel. The place looks stunning. I recall going into Mamma Rosa back in the day; it always felt like being in a funeral home. The parking lot is much improved, too. It used to seem like war-torn Kosovo. Craters and what not. It’s nice and smooth now.
I ordered one of my favorite dishes, cannelloni, which is not often found on Italian restaurant menus. House-made pasta sheets rolled around a beef and sausage filling; topped with red sauce & mozz then baked off. Sort of like an Italian enchilada. Mamma Ramona’s cannelloni was outstanding! Warning: when it comes out, it’s about 9,000 degrees. Allow it to cool for a few minutes and start with small bites. My dinner included garlic bread plus choice of soup or salad, only $15.
If you know me, you know I love salads in a wooden bowl. Imagine my delight when my salad came out in a wooden bowl just like at the Weev. The greens were fresh and crisp, with none of that fancy tissue paper lettuce that you can’t even stab with a fork. There was no juice spooge from my pepperoncini, totally dry inside, but the flesh was firm and tasty. My son had the lobster bisque. I didn’t try it but it looked rather thick and viscous. He used the term “pudding” to describe the consistency.
I am pleased to report that Mamma Ramona’s is now serving beer & wine! Overall it was a really nice experience. I was impressed. The service was thorough, friendly and knowledgable. If there were ever any “kinks” after the ownership transition, they have been “worked out”. I will say, the chairs at their new high-top tables are somewhat uncomfortable, but you get used to it after a few minutes. Highly recommended.

Marechiaro’s Italian Restaurant

Outstanding manicotti at Marechiaro’s!

Italian Cucina

Decent baked penne thing at Barona Casino’s Italian Cucina. It used to be a lot better. Starting to see signs of corner cutting with less ingredients and overall quality. Also not baked to perfection like the last time I had it.

Italian Cucina

Decent order of lasagna at Barona Casino’s Italian Cucina. Not quite as good as it was before here.

Italian Cucina

Tasty Chicken Parmigiana at Barona Casino’s Italian Cucina! Unfortunately, their current ‘rona protocol has them covering the completed dishes in plastic wrap when it leaves the kitchen. The diner then has to literally unwrap it like a present at the table. Not a fan of that. A stainless steel dome would be far more elegant.

Olive Garden

Tasty “Five Cheese Ziti al Forno” with Italian sausage and meatball at OG in Santee, CA!

Marinade on Main

Visited June 24, 2020 – If you’re a fan of garlic, you have to try this dish! Outstanding “Marinades Alfredo Pasta” at Marinade on Main. I’ve tried much of the menu here and this one is such a fave and always exquisitely constructed. It all starts with a base of delicious linguine Alfredo that would rival any top-shelf Italian restaurant. Pasta is al dente and the Alfredo sauce has a distinct garlic note. Truly a combustion of flavor. Many Alfredos can be somewhat bland; not this one. The house-made fried chicken is very good with a distinctly crispy and tasty crust. The whole thing is then beautifully adorned with arugula and prosciutto. Only $17; no ‘rona surcharge here.


Now, I dearly adore air conditioning. God Bless Willis Carrier. However 3 of the 4 HVAC ceiling registers in the dining area were missing or had been removed. These are the vents or grates that gracefully distribute the cold air throughout a room or space. Unfortunately, not having the registers in place sent a column of cold air streaming down onto the table. The chicken stayed hot but the pasta quickly assumed room temperature.

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