We were all pretty tired when we arrived at Gino D’Acampo restaurant at the Corn Exchange in Machester after a full on day of cycling and football, so food was very much on the agenda. I was immediately in love with the lighting, huge cream shades above each table giving up a soft ochre light helping to set the relaxed mood. Lighting design can add ten fold to the enjoyment of eating out and I’ve been in some places where interrogation seems to have been the brief.
The speedy waiters did not look much older than my 14-year-old son (must be their Italian genes) and I briefly imagined their mothers back in the Tuscan hills pining for their precious adorable sons. The kitchen is open and you can see all the chefs in action, moving furiously back and forth between stations before shouting ‘servizio’ the very second each dish was ready.
Grissini with Parma ham and fresh pesto to start with some olives and I had to fend of the rest of the family to get even one. One of the greatest pleasures in life for me is fresh made pesto! We are total no-brainers when it comes to food, seafood for Mum & Dad and pizzas for the children. Hence Risotto with Scallops, creamy lemon risotto with Scallops and Seafood Linguine.
My eldest practically inhaled his Fiorenina Pizza steaming hot and crisp out of the wood-fired pizza oven. The youngest opted for a pizza Parmigiana, with chicken, buffalo mozzarella, parmesan and basil. Fresh, huge and full of flavour. Pizzas are simple but often so dreadful, but not here. “Best pizza ever” was the verdict Of course we had to have some Courgette Fries, who wouldn’t!
Our seafood was fresh and perfectly cooked, I wasn’t feeling generous so didn’t even give away one of my melt-in-the-mouth scallops, but everyone else dived into the risotto and I was told in no uncertain terms in was ‘much better than mine’ Two glasses of Pinot Grigio Blush added beautifully to the mix.
I’ve always been a fan on the booth style seating, gives a real intimacy and cosiness to dinner. We adored the music too and Shazamed several tracks to make our playlist at home!
The place is busy and bustling, with city centre workers popping in for an early dinner, and those looking for sustenance after a hard day hitting the shops. The staff are all like little fireflies seemingly dancing around in your vision attending to customers needs. We finished with lemon sorbet and Nutella ice cream – home-made, hand-made and delicious, we all had a total spoon fight over these two! Each came with a flat waffle cone, genius. Two espresso’s for us and that was us all done, stuffed with deliciousness and ready for the journey home.
Every Mum knows that having dinner cooked for you that you have not had to think about, shop for and prepare is just the business. Ramp that feeling by a zillion and this is the feeling I had when eating dinner here. This place is just the total and utter BUSINESS and so said all of us.
You can pop in any time to the bar at the front and have a quick bite and drink and something I plan to do soon.