Hands down the best restaurant in The Pantiles, unless you don't care for Mediterranean food. The menu is varied with starters, pasta, pizza, and mains. The cooking is excellent, the presentation good, the wine list decent, both the Portuguese red and white very appealing, and the staff outstanding. Particular compliments and special thanks to Lydia, from Spain, and Artur, from Portugal. My wife and I dined at the restaurant on multiple occasions...(No, we have no ownership nor any other involvement. Just a couple of civilians.)...and these two were especially welcoming and warm.
Some food highlights: the mussels starter is generous and nicely spiced; the gnocchi with a mild gorgonzola sauce very deftly done. Gnocchi can be difficult. This one has confidently balanced flavors and a lovely texture. Pizza -- well here I have to interrupt myself with a biographical note. I came of age in and in the environs of New York City. I learned something about a good pie in my formative years. (Pizza in New York was generally better then than it is now, but that's another story for another time.) La Casa Vecchia makes a really good pie, especially the Pizza Grey Lady, named after the music venue upstairs. The crust is thin, which it has to be, neither the tomato sauce nor cheese overwhelming, which they can't be, the other ingredients fresh and well composed. Yeah, that's what I'm talkin' about.
Among the mains, the duck breast is superb and, again, generously portioned.
One thing I've noticed about Trip Advisor and me. I'm more confident about the B&B, hotel, and self-catering apartment reviews than I am with the restaurant reviews. La Casa Vecchia has received mostly good reviews, but it's rating on the numerical listing is much lower than it should be. Seriously, not to pick on anyone, but how can The Ragged Trousers, which is a pub in The Pantiles and only serves food during the day, be ranked higher as a restaurant than La Casa Vecchia?
At any rate, I live approximately 9000 miles from Kent, but if I'm there again I'm certainly going back to this place. And if you're in the neighborhood and happen to be jonesin' for a good pie, get over there. You won't be sorry.
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