Italian food is probably the most common food in Phuket after Thai seafood and street food. But just as street food varies so does Italian food. Sometimes it’s an Italian chef but more often the Chef is an Asian chef especially Thai, who has learnt the skills.
I have a number of Italian favourite restaurants from La Gaetana Restaurant in Phuket Town, Roma in Banana Plaza, Patong (that used to be in Soi Post Office), Sugo with Chef Nino in Surin and finally Acqua with award winning chef Alessandro in Kalim. Each offers something different and as I have said many times, the meal can be a real adventure if you chat to the Chef. However most of these are in the central and western side of Phuket although La Gaetana is in the East.
I have recently added one more restaurant to my preferred list. Bodega is in the Cherngtalay/Laguna area and well worth trying. It is in the Angsana Hotel, Laguna (the renamed Sheraton Hotel for the old timers and the previous home of Chef Alessandro). Like the other places, the service is first class, the wine list is very good under Sommelier Ryan (and it may surprise you he is Korean and very knowable) but Chef Antonio is the key and he knows his Italian food as well as my other favourite places.
Whilst Bodega has all the traditional pasta and seafood dishes, they have a unique Meat Signature dish that reminds you of northern Italy. A huge selection of meats and sausages served on a sizzling platter- but you will need 2 or 3 people to enjoy it fully. It is definitely the dish for those that want an alternative to seafood and vegetables – although these are on offer as well.
It is also one of the few places that I recommend you indulge in a dessert- they are to die for.
So why do I like it (apart from the food, service and wine selection)? It is quiet, out of the way, not easy to find and a place you can escape to and forget about the time. So if you want a romantic place, a place to escape to, an interesting and memorable place for a business meeting or whatever, it is ideal.
Psssst Don’t tell anyone – by all means try it but keep the secret. You won’t regret it.