A couple weeks ago Mike and I went to Pazzo Pazzo (10016 103 Ave) for our good friend Mike Tighe’s surprise birthday dinner!
Pazzo Pazzo is right in the downtown core, attached to a parkade and office building space. As we walked to the restaurant we could smell some amazing scents wafting up into the parkade!
The restaurant describes itself as fine dining Italian cuisine. Unfortunately I didn’t think the experience was very fine.
This is what I believe about Italian, Chinese, and Japanese restaurants in Edmonton. There are SO many of them here that you need to be really good – or have something to positively set you apart – for me to want to come back and/or rave about you. Otherwise you get lost in the mix. I feel like Pazzo Pazzo is lost in the mix.
Service was extremely, extremely slow and the food was just okay.
The Proscuitto e Bocconcini (pictured above – $14) was the tastiest dish overall for me. Loaded with delicious tomato sauce and great seasoning, these were perfect appetizers.
Mike Tighe got the Pasticcio (Five varieties of pasta noodles with two types of cheese and tomato-cream sauce, baked – $17) and his wife Rachel got the Chicken Parmigiana (lightly breaded 10 oz. chicken breast topped with tomato sauce, Parmesan and Mozzarella cheeses, baked – $25). They’ve been to Pazzo Pazzo before and have always enjoyed it. This time’s service was worse than what they usually experience.
The portions at Pazzo Pazzo are really generous so the quantity is absolutely top-notch here. Plus generous portions of pasta always make for fantastic leftovers. But I found the quality faltered for my dish.
My angel hair Chicken Breast Alla Panna (fresh 10 oz. breast of chicken marinated in olive oil and cognac, lightly sauteed and topped with cream suace, broccoli, onions and mushrooms – $25) came with too much sauce on the pasta and too much oil on the chicken. As I mixed things around I just kept getting more and more grease. Again huge portion, but that’s only good if the food is good right?
Mike’s Carbonara (pasta sauteed with chopped bacon, Italian sausage, mushroom, garlic, parmesan cheese and egg, topped with fresh basil – $20) was actually the best of the night I thought. It was really quite tasty, the pasta had a great texture, and the dish wasn’t overly sauced up or oily. Of course I would forget to take a photo of the best dish of the night. (Rookie move!)
I think it didn’t help that I had just eaten at Porta Romana in Spruce Grove the day before, and had a really awesome, fresh-in-my-mind experience to compare Pazzo Pazzo to, but overall I just wasn’t impressed with the food (and especially not the service).
Like I said, with so many Italian restaurants in Edmonton, you need to give people a great experience for them to want to come back – otherwise they have so many other places to choose from.
I think some of the important qualities of what makes restaurants ‘fine dining’ – excellent service, delicious food, beautiful plates – were lacking here.
There’s so many terrific Italian / pasta options here, and my experience at Pazzo Pazzo was so lacklustre, I won’t likely be back.
If you do try Pazzo Pazzo, I recommend the Proscuitto e Bocconcini and the Carbonara!
If you have tried Pazzo Pazzo… tell me – what did you think??