When I heard that Ciao Roma on South Bridge had been recognised by the Evening News as the Best Italian in Edinburgh it barely registered. But then I remembered my friend Eleanor maintained that it was her family’s favourite Italian in the city, too. Perhaps it was time to check it out.
I’ve visited its sister places Bar Italia and Martone in the past and found them fine if uninspiring.
This place has a slightly more stylish feel and an eye-catching mural of figures of Italian popular culture. It’s a very familiar Italian restaurant set-up.
Lunch service was quiet but the welcome was warm and attentive throughout.
The menu is broad with pizza and pasta options and the usual array of whatnots. I settled upon the polenta crostini to start followed by the cavatelli pasta with nduja to follow.
The starter arrived looking much as expected. It was a simple dish of polenta cuboids topped with creamy mushrooms. It was straightforward, well seasoned and very well executed.
The main course followed the same pattern. A light tomato sauce was given depth from the spicy nduja sausage. Pieces of chicken and cherry tomatoes were interspersed with the little baguette-like pieces of pasta. It was another simple and accomplished dish.
So overall, I was pleased to find Ciao Roma on such fine form. Both dishes I tried were very satisfying. I’m confident there are better places for Italian food in the city, but it was still a pleasure to see a good amount of care and attention being taken with these hearty plates of food.
Blythe scores Ciao Roma
4/5 for food
3.5/5 for presentation
3.5/5 for setting
3.5/5 for service
giving an overall 14.5/20
I ate: crostini polenta; cavatelli con nduja
I drank: water
I wore: blue
Total bill: £16.45
Address: 64 South Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1LS