ASK Italian is inspired by Italy from the authentic Italian food to the easy going atmosphere, warm service and fresh design and so when we were asked if we wanted to give our local restaurant a visit, I knew that we would be in for some lovely pizzas, pastas and Italian cuisine of the finest around.
There are loads of ASK Italian restaurants around the whole of the country but only one in Leeds, right at the other side to us. But luckily, it's easy to get to and we couldn't wait to pop in and sample their food.
ASK Italian in Headingley is in a beautiful building and is stunningly decorated throughout. Giving and authentic Italian feel to the whole place and the smell of the food is divine. The menu is bursting with a range of different dishes, from pizza and pasta to risotto and meat dishes and so it took a while for us to eventually decide on what we wanted.
For starters, we both went for Panzerottini which are dough balls. You can pick between Fontal cheese and chilli or pepperoni, we went for a mix of the 2 so we could have a taste of each. Absolutely scrumptious and flavoursome. We saw the chef making them, from scratch, in the kitchen area and both enjoyed working our way through them. Even Charlie had a try of them and they were so moreish.
Charlie is a lover of food and they do a great kids menu at ASK Italian. A starter of vegetable crudités, garlic bread and a dip. The mixture of fresh, crunchy veg and warm garlic bread was a huge hit with Charlie and he loved that he could dip them all straight into his sauce.
For mains, my husband went for the Pork Belly Porchetta which is a Tuscan classic. Gorgeous, slow-roasted pork belly in herbed red wine sauce, served with roasted new potatoes and greens. The pork itself was a good sized piece and all the veg gave a very hearty meal.
I opted for Sea Bass Al Forno which is a fillet of sea bass baked in a white wine sauce with new potatoes, tomatoes, mushrooms and spinach. Gorgeous flaky fish which just melted in the mouth worked so well with the sauce and accompanying mushrooms. The waitress did tell me that the dish was burning hot as she placed it on the table but, as I was trying to get a photo, I grabbed it and burnt my finger. Sometimes I need to listen more haha!
For his main, Charlie had Spaghetti Al Pomodoro which is spaghetti in a tasty plum tomato sauce, with fresh tomatoes and garlic. Charlie ate most of the dish which was huge and loved trying a new flavour as well as getting himself messy with the sauce. It's nice to see that a restaurant caters properly for children instead of just giving them boring foods they get a big, bold, burst of flavour, just like the main menu.
Me and my husband opted for the Dessert Sharing Board to finish as then we could have a few of the desserts and try them all. This board includes slices of warm Chocolate and Almond Cake, Italian Cheesecake and warm Almond, Plum and Pistachio Tart plus two scoops of vanilla gelato. My favourite was the plum and pistachio tart which was so moist and tasted sumptuous with the ice cream whereas my husband loved the chocolate and almond cake.
Strawberry Meringue Stacks were Charlie's dessert. Hazelnut meringue, vanilla gelato and fresh strawberries which looked absolutely divine. All the flavours mixed well to give a yummy dessert for a child and Charlie enjoyed devouring this and then helping us finish off our dessert too.
The whole meal was absolutely delicious and we all enjoyed our meals and having a try of each others too. This is the most food I have seen Charlie eat in one sitting. Not only did he eat his own food, but he then tried some of my fish and helped us finish of our desserts before going back to his own and devouring the meringue and strawberries.
Overall, I was thoroughly impressed with the friendly service we received, the fact that we could see into the kitchen and watch the chef's preparing and cooking our food and then of course the amazing food which was fabulous. If you want more information about the food, or to find your closest restaurant, visit the ASK Italian website.