Cafe Citta, Church Street

So the end of March is nigh, and I have managed to tick another foody spot off my March hitlist. After reading rave reviews on Tripadvisor I visited Cafe Citta yesterday with my aunties for lunch. I booked a table for 12.30 (thankfully as by 1 there was a decent queue to be seated), and this (very) small, independent Italian restaurant was a lushious escape from the quite frankly shite weather that had doomed Cardiff that day.

Cafe Citta I would say only has 10 tables, a teeny tiny bar nessled under a stair case, and a small open kitchen with a wood burning oven. The mixture of a small space + wood burning oven + Italian food being cooked fresh to order in an open kitchen meant this place smelt absolutely incredible. As soon as I walked through the door I was hit by the heady smell of garlic and by god it made me hungry. This subsequently lead to the ordering of bruschetta to nibble on whilst we looked at the menu

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And this was very good brushetta. Really good tomatoes, really good (non soggy) toasted bread, really garlicky and really well seasoned….really. 

I was certain I was going to order pizza after 1) hearing great things and 2) being wowed by the chef spinning pizza bases in the kitchen. However after seeing the portion sizes of the pasta dishes we all settled on pasta. I chose seafood linguine (£10.50), with a side (even though it’s a starter) of baked polenta with a dolcelatte cheese sauce (£5ish).

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Everything was delicious. The pasta was cooked to a perfect al dente and was packed with sweet, meaty seafood. The tomato and white wine sauce had a slight hint of chilli, and chunks of tomato and slithers of carrot added to the sweetness and bulkiness of the dish. The cheesy baked polenta was rich, salty and indulgent and matched well with the sweet pasta dish (go me). This was simple, tasty food at it’s best.

My aunties both went for spaghetti with sundried tomato, ricotta and pinenuts (possibly another ingredient but I can’t remember boo).

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And a side salad

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They were equally impressed with their dishes.

And after much deliberation, we also had pudding. These were good, but not as good as the main courses – something I always find happens with Italian but still every time I order the sweet stuff. I went for the home made lemon and orange cheesecake (£4.50 I believe).

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The actual cheesecake I would say was more of a panna cotta, and there wasn’t much of a biscuit base. However the candied lemon and orange peel on top (there was deff some Ameretto in there aswell…I think it did disclose this on the menu) was so yummy and the syrup off it was delicious. I nice end to the meal, but possibly not a necessary one. Other puddings ordered were a scoop of vanilla ice cream and a vanilla panna cotta with blueberry compote – both fine but again probably not a necessary order. Oh and we had coffees which were very very good. 

Overall I would highly recommend a visit to this tiny authentic Italian. We felt as if we could have been sat in a restaurant down a side street in Rome or Florence or something – a little Italian escape for sure. The friendly attentive service and great food means I will 100% be going back – I gotta try one of those hand spun/flung pizzas.

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