Food Review: Bella Napoli, Shawlands

Bella Napoli restaurant review food pics
Bella Napoli restaurant review food pics

There can be few restaurants in Scotland where you can sit looking out on a vineyard — and no, I wasn’t drinking! Bella Napoli on Kilmarnock Road transports you all the way to Italy with the simple use of a 3D Trompe l’Oeil effect.

The menu is typically Italian fare with a wee nod to Glasgow and is fairly extensive with a good selection of meat, poultry, fish, pasta, pizza and burgers.

However, it stands out in a class of its own via proprietor Domenico Crolla’s insistence on travelling to Europe to choose his own hams, salamis, cheeses and wines. Now that’s serious dedication!

The significant other and I were ably looked after by Guiseppe, who exuded a long-forgotten style of old-fashioned service — helpful, attentive but not intrusive.

We started our sojourn into dining heaven with Polpette; oven-baked Italian meatballs in a white wine and tomato sauce. The seasoned pork and beef mix created a succulent and tender melt-in-the-mouth morsel in a tasty piquant sauce.

Mrs Mac opted for the pate infused with Marsala and red wine and served with a red onion and strawberry jam. As I lent over for a taste, she sat back with an empty plate — I didn’t get so much as a sniff!

We moved onto one of the house specialities next — the Antipasto — a plate of mixed meats, grilled and pickled veg. WOW — now I know why Domenico selects his own hams and salamis. From the peppery Salami Milano to the sweetness of an air-dried Parma partnered with the crunchy pickled veg, I could have happily sat here scoffing plate after plate of that.

OK, course two down, onto number three. Bella Napoli is known for their Carbonara, offering two versions — the Scottish and a traditional Italian. As one might expect the Scottish is made with cream while the traditional eschews such ingredients.

Watching my waistline —rapidly expanding — I opted for the traditional. Mmmm. Al-dente spaghetti wrapped in egg yolk, parmesan, garlic and smoked pancetta. I can see now why STV said it’s the best in Scotland!

The SO decided to try the Gnocchi Smokey Joe. Pillows of light fluffy dumplings in a sweet barbecue smoked sauce with peas, pancetta and Scamorza cheese. This time I managed a wee taste — but only because she couldn’t finish it! I’d happily choose this on another visit.

Now at this point I’ll admit that an age-old quest was fulfilled last week. No longer am I searching for the best Creme Brûlée — I’ve found it at Bella Napoli!

The baked custard was delicately light and the topping caramelised to perfection. What a dish!

On the other side of the table, a selection of delicate, and crispy macaroons were the order of the day, served with a seasonal fresh fruit and whipped cream.

Needless to say another plate was licked clean — well not literally, that would’ve just been wrong!

Cost of meal (excluding soft drinks): £47.20

{http://|BELLA NAPOLI}

85 Kilmarnock Road


G41 3YR

0141 632 4222