It has been a very long time since Gina and I went to La Strada for a meal so when I was recently on leave, we decided to revisit La Strada at Shaw House along Scotts Road.
We had just done dinner the night before in another Italian restaurant but came out rather disappointed - Gina's favorite the Spaghetti Vongole (clams) with white wine sauce was so-so. So after dinner, I was already planning to bring her to La Strada to satisfy her craving for a good Spaghetti Vongole.
We arrived at La Strada on a Sunday afternoon around 1.30pm and were lucky to get a table quickly enough. I like the restaurant setting - some homely charm about the place. The "new" La Strada is smaller than when I was last there. But still charming and the wait staff were as friendly as I had recalled.
On promotion were the black truffles from Australia - seen here under a heavy glass cover. They have on the menu several dishes specially created with black truffle but we were not there for the black truffles!
Lift the egg and the bacon and one sees the tapenade over the grilled portobello mushroom. I am not a big fan of black olives but the tapenade here is really delicious. Done beautifully and crispy. Break the egg yolk over the tapenade and the egg transforms the dish - wonderful compliment to the tapenade and portobello. A great recommendation by the waitress.
And then the dish we came for - Spaghetti Vongole. In this case, they used a linguine instead - but still does not change the fact that La Strada makes one of the better Vongole dishes. I am sure if we had asked for spaghetti instead that they would have changed it for us. Cooked in white wine sauce with chili, garlic and fresh parsley, this dish is our family favorite.
The clams were larger than the previous night but smaller than what I recall we had many years ago. Then, La Strada imported clams from New Zealand and they were superb - juicy and still tasting of the sea water when one bites into the clams. But these are still rather big - bigger than normal. The question I have for you is this - do you de-shell all the clams before you tuck in or de-shell as you go along?
See how big the clam shells are? Sign of how big the clams are inside. Me? Well I had the pappardelle al Iberico secreto - a broad flat pasta with Iberico pork secreto. Why secret? Well I was told it is a special cut of pork from the fame black hog.
Thoroughly enjoyed ourselves at La Strada and no doubt we will be making another visit real soon. And honestly, the Linguine Vongole is worth every penny. And the service staff were friendly and attentive. I highly recommend La Strada for a lazy Sunday brunch amongst family and friends.