Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Lombardi's: Fresh, Authentic Italian Cuisine at Shangri-La's New East Wing

Real Italian dishes. The best and freshest ingredients. All made from scratch. Every single day. And now you can get a true taste of authentic Italian flavors at Lombardi's newest location.

Chef Davide Lombardi opens his second restaurant at the new East Wing of the Shangri-La Plaza Mall, offering authentic Italian classics using the very best and freshest ingredients for a true taste of Italy. And just like his first branch that bears his name at Robinson's Magnolia, one can expect rustic and traditional Italian dishes the way it should be. Born and raised in Milan, Davide Lombardi's passion for for cooking began at an early age, helping his grandmother in the kitchen while preparing family meals. Thus eventually led to stints with some of the famous restaurants in Italy, and then to Paris where he worked for fifteen years. It was in Paris where he met his wife, and moving to the Philippines was just a matter of time. Chef Davide Lombardi brings with him years of experience, and one of his goals is to bring the authentic taste and experience of Italian cuisine. At Lombardi's, you get exactly that, real Italian dishes true to its origins using the best and freshest ingredients, and never tweaked to suit the local palate.

Inside, the same homey and rustic interiors greet diners, similar to the overall look of Chef Davide Lombardi's first branch at Robinson's Magnolia. Light wood, bright tones and simple yet modern lines add to the charm of the place. Items that are usually found at home, like plates and other decorative pieces, are displayed on shelves, providing a comforting and casual warmth.  
As we entered Lombardi's, the kitchen was all fired up preparing for the dinner service. In the kitchen, one can see a traditional brick oven that gives its pizzas that distinct and traditional flavor. No frozen dough here, each pizza is made by hand, just the way it should be. Chef Davide Lombardi makes everything from scratch, and you can taste the difference in each and every dish. 

Then, the first of many dishes arrived. Lombardi's Carpaccio Di Manzo (P 460), beef carpaccio marinated with lemon and olive oil, topped with fresh Parmesan shavings. For dishes like this, premium and fresh ingredients matter, and this does not disappoint. Butter like, melt-in-your-mouth premium beef with a light nutty hint from the olive oil, and a nice sharpness from the Parmesan, combine for an excellent antipasto.

Perfect when paired with imported Italian beer, like the Moretti Baffo D' Oro (P 140), from one of Italy's oldest breweries. Pour the deep amber colored ale into the chilled mug, and go for another slice of the Carpaccio di Manzo. That's an authentic Italian moment right there.

This was then followed with a classic Carpaccio di Tonno (P 390), fresh tuna with arugula, cherry tomatoes, and extra virgin olive oil. Simple, clean flavors. The subtle sweetness of the tuna indicates both freshness and quality, another excellent starter.

Mozzarella in Carroza with Arrabbiata Sauce (P 230), soft loaf bread with mozzarella, arrabbiata sauce and a side of salad. The rich arrabbiata sauce provides a contrasting flavor to balance the creamy mozzarella,  and proving once again that simple dishes can pack so much flavors when using the best ingredients.

Then, the first of the pizzas arrived, starting with the Quattro Formaggi (P 420), a crisp, rustic crust topped with Provolone, Fontina, Gorgonzola and Mozzarella, pure cheese bliss. Drizzle some chili oil for a little kick,  but it's great as is. The medley of cheeses are enough to get you started on your third and fourth slice...

Vegetariana (P 310), an all-veggie pizza topped with zucchini, eggplant, asparagus, bell peppers and basil. Simple flavors, yet the fresh vegetables and crisp crust provide a richness that's refreshing and different.

Pizza Aisalumi (P 500), topped with rich tomato sauce, mozzarella, and a variety of Italian Ham, including Prosciutto, Mortadella, Salame Milano and Coppa, a personal favorite. With prosciutto, you just can't go wrong. Add some mortadella and Italian salami, and it just can't get any better than that.

Alla Siciliana (P 310), topped with tangy tomato sauce, mozzarella, anchovies, capers and black olives, all the flavors of the Mediterranean in each and every bite.

A friend asked Chef Davide Lombardi for a real, authentic carbonara, without the usual creamy white sauce. Chef Lombardi then disappeared to the kitchen, and in a few minutes, presented a true classic. Even without the creamy sauce, the flavors remain just as rich. Just like that, Lombardi's comes through with another winner. Bravo, Chef Lombardi!

The cool Carbonara was then followed by Lombardi's Spaghetti Frutti de Mare (P 400), with plump prawns, clams, mussels and squid. Another simple and rustic dish yet rich in flavor, another favorite. The seeming absence of any sauce is deceptive, as you can taste the rich and tart tomatoes in every forkful of noodles.

Taglietelleamatriciana (P 380), a comforting pasta dish with stewed tomatoes, Italian Pancetta and fresh basil. Just like the previous pasta dish, each noodle is coated with the stewed tomatoes for a burst of flavor in every bite, enhanced by the sharpness of the pancetta.

Lasagne Della Casa (P 310), with layers of Bolognese and Bechamel sauce on rich stewed tomatoes. The contrasting flavors and textures blend perfectly in this traditional favorite, with no single ingredient overpowering the other. Perfect.

This. Lombardi's new steak dish, Tagliata di Manzo (P 1,200) imported seared ribeye baked with rosemary and glazed with balsamic, olive oil and herbs. Tender, and cooked just right, perfect with another Moretti.

Save some room for Lombardi's homemade gelato, just perfect to complete your Italian experience. Go for the Hazelnut and Pistachio, my personal picks.

Can't make up your mind? Then go for the Barca de Gelato, featuring five scoops of Lombardi's gelato, with all the cool toppings.

You simply gotta have Lombardi's gelato after a meal to complete the Italian experience. Seriously.

Kathleen Lombardi Eleazar (L), Lombardi's Sales and Marketing Manager, checking in on us, and Janey (R) of Between Bites (check out her cool blog here at http://www.janedchua.com/), enjoying the food.

Good food. Good times. It's great to find cool spots serving foreign dishes the way it should be, and at Lombardi's, you get the real thing. Better yet, they now have two locations for you to check out real Italian cuisine. You can also check out my previous post on the first Lombardi's branch in Robinson's Magnolia here at http://dude4food.blogspot.com/2012/12/authentic-italian-at-lombardis.html.

Special thanks to Chef Davide Lombardi and Kathleen Lombardi Eleazar, Sales and Marketing Manager; for and awesome dining experience. Thanks too to the CCA Group, great seeing you again Mitzi!

Lombardi's Authentic Italian's second branch is located at Level 4, East Wing, Shangri-La Mall Plaza, Shaw Boulevard, Mandaluyong. You can also visit Lombardi's Authentic Italian's first branch at the 2nd Floor, Al Fresco Robinson's Magnolia, New Manila, San Juan.

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  1. Everything looks so GOOD! I wish I could taste every single dish!

    1. Hi Angie, awesome food, great to hear from you!


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