Va Bene Pasta Deli: Take Your Taste Buds To Italy
Va Bene Pasta Deli, owned by Chef Massimo and his wife Carolyn Veronesi, started as a hole-in-the-wall restaurant in Makati and BGC. Its first branch is situated beside a gas station along EDSA and the second branch is near the BGC Cinemas. And now, after much recognition from many foodies and customers, Va Bene Pasta Deli has opened its third branch in Circuit Makati.
We recently visited the new branch and enjoyed possibly the most authentic Italian dining experience right here in the Philippines!
Love at first bite
We were welcomed with complimentary slices of bread with salsa. Stuffed with capers, this makes a simple and lovely starter. It is best eaten right away to retain the bread’s crunchy texture. So, we dug in, and it was love at first bite!
Small plates invasion
We tried three of their offerings. First, we had Butter Squash. These crisp slices of toasted bread are topped with chilies, ricotta mousse, and mint. Its flavor, aroma and complementing spices make it a hearty finger food.
Dressed with shallots, parsley, tonnato sauce, and capers, the Salmon Tartar is refreshingly delicious. It’s a perfect starter for any meal. This is our favorite because we just can’t get enough of capers!
Cheese lovers must try the Crispy Polenta “Arancini,” which you can dip in blue cheese sauce.
When you don’t feel like having a heavy meal, you can indulge in these small plates like Italian tapas.
Tasty salad and pizza
The Va Bene Salad presents a delicious play of sweet and bitter flavors. The contrasting textures and flavors of caramelized apples and arugula leaves were a delightful combination. Add to this the rich and meaty flavors from the breaded veal tongue.
If you’re one of the regular customers of Va Bene who are looking for new Italian offerings, then head to the Circuit Makati branch for their 12-inch Neapolitan-style pizza. Loaded with parma ham, tomato, gorgonzola, mozzarella, and fresh arugula leaves, Florentina is a wonderful tasting pizza. Seriously, it’s a match made in pizza heaven!
“There’s nothing more romantic than Italian food.” And a sure way to your heart is through a bowl of pasta. Our tummies were already full, but when these fresh pasta dishes were served, we just couldn’t resist.
First on our pasta feast is the Cavatelli, which was perfectly cooked al dente with a blend of homemade pancetta, garlic, shallots, San Marzano, E.V.O., and topped with basil. The Cavatelli looks like little shells or hotdog buns that hold the savory sauce. Sarap!
Next came the Reginette. Smothered in a sauce made with braised lamb shank, Italian sausage, and semi-dried tomatoes, this dish is just bursting with flavors. The mint pesto and lamb are a classic pairing! Each bite is packed with Italian goodness.
Never leave Va Bene without trying its signature pasta dish with truffle mushroom sauce. In this branch, the dish is called Duck Ravioli as it is served with a creamy mushroom sauce and, of course, duck jus reduction; other branches use veal cheeks.
Irresistible dessert and cocktail
We ended our sumptuous dinner with this light Basil Panna Cotta dessert. Served with calamansi sorbet and fruit salad, it’s a sweet and zesty treat.
We also enjoyed sipping sangria. When we visited, it was the special drink of the night. Make sure you ask for the drink of the night when you dine here so you can have the complete and perfect experience.
The Va Bene Pasta Deli experience
Va Bene Pasta Deli will take your taste buds to Italy with its authentic and reasonably priced pasta, pizzas, and classic to modern Italian dishes. The atmosphere in the restaurant is straightforward, casual, and not at all intimidating which we think helps put the spotlight on the food they serve. The restaurant has high chairs available for kids, so families with little ones can comfortably dine here, too.
Courteous, accommodating, and knowledgeable staff members will attend to you. A big plus in every dining experience is when your server knows the menu and can confidently describe and recommend dishes. We had a little chat with some of the staff—Eric and Ralph. Mr. Eric has been with Va Bene ever since it first opened its doors, and he shared with us that regular customers from their other branches come through Circuit Makati to dine as well.
Chef Massimo was such a humble host considering his multitude of awards and acknowledgments in the industry. And with the success that Va Bene Pasta Deli has garnered, you can expect nothing less of an enjoyable meal.