BY Demola Ojo

As part of the ongoing renovation at the Lagos Sheraton, the Italian restaurant now wears a new look. Christened La Giara, the restaurant – which is on the ground floor of the hotel – has been jazzed up with new décor and bright lights (a pool table too), which all give it a stylish and contemporary look.

The novelty is not restricted to the ambience though. The La Giara comes with a new menu consisting of traditional Italian dishes; pizzas, pastas, and a lot more as I found out a few days ago when I was there for lunch with two friends. The extensive menu had original Italian meals. Thankfully, there was a breakdown of what each dish is made of in English.

While poring through the menu trying to choose from the wide-ranging options, we got complimentary Pukacha bread with parmesan cheese and olive oil. Since the main courses take close to 30 minutes to be ready, we also opted for a quick bite: Pastella Calamari, which is fried in barter and served with lemon wedges and tartar sauce. It turned out to be an indication of what to expect as it was really tasty.

For the main course, one of my friends went for Pollo al Pesto; chicken in pesto, fresh tomatoes and mozzarella, while the other decided on Marinara di Gamberi; grilled marinated prawns, herbs and spicy tomato sauce with a side of potatoes. I opted for pasta and as usual, asked for a dish that effortlessly incorporates chili. This meant my Spaghetti di Gamberi (spaghetti with king prawns, cooked with garlic, basil, tomatoes and white wine) came extra hot, just the way I like it. Since it was seafood pasta, it was only right to pair it with white wine.

All meals were sumptuous, as my companions confirmed. (My portion was really large so I didn’t bother trying the others.) It probably accounted for why the restaurant was busy. It may have just been reopened, but word has surely gone out about how good the food is.