I love Italian food. If I had to eat just a certain type of food for the rest of my life, Italian food would be right up in my Top 3 alongside Vietnamese and Japanese food. I could honestly eat pasta every day!
With that in mind, today I wanted to write about one of my favourite Italian restaurants in Edmonton – Uccellino, located downtown on Jasper Ave and 103 Street.
Uccellino is the third and newest restaurant from Chef Daniel Costa, having just opened about a year ago. Costa’s other two spots – Corso 32 and Bar Bricco – are extremely popular but Uccellino is easily my favourite of the three.
Uccellino is larger, making it easier to get a table at, and also giving you a roomier experience (Corso with its 32 seats can sometimes make it feel like you’re dining with the guests at tables on either side of you.) They also offer reservations for just half of their seats, with the other half open for walk-ins, so that also helps your chances with finding an available table.
Uccellino is also lighter and brighter, with sunlight spilling in through big windows at the front, unlike its far darker sister restaurants. There’s a more private upstairs that is nice for groups of up to 12, and it just has a more modern feel to it.
The menu/food offering at Uccellino is similar to what you’d find at Corso. There’s an appetizer selection, pasta selection, main meats selection, and some sides. The price points are also similar (actually, Corso might be a bit cheaper!) but is certainly on the pricier (nice night out) kind of spectrum. Totally worth it – Uccellino serves up quality, Italian food.
I just can’t say enough good things about Uccellino. I’ve been a few times now and am always left completely satisfied. My most recent stop there this weekend was with a good friend whose friend was visiting from the United Kingdom.
Where should we take him to eat? we had pondered.
In fact, the restaurant has sort of become my go-to ‘this will impress people’ spot. It’s consistently delivering great food and great service.
Uccellino encourages diners to share their dishes family style, so here’s what our group shared (a.k.a food porn alert below!)
The pasta, made from scratch in-house, is just divine. Gnocchi, ever so pillowy and soft. Patate Fritte, seasoned perfectly with the best crunch. The prettiest beef carpaccio, with shaved rainbow beets. Their char-grilled romaine lettuce? Maybe the only way to get Mike to want to eat lettuce (with cheese piled on top).
Uccellino does not skimp on the cheese. Cheese lovers will love the generous amounts of cheese atop almost all of their dishes.
And there’s just as much delicious vegetarian options as there are for the meat eaters. A favourite non-meaty option (not pictured here) that I’ve tried on past visits is their Panzanella Salad (with tuscan bread, tomatoes, cucumber, red onion, lemon, and olive oil $15). They also switch up their Crostinis regularly. A past favourite of mine was their tomato, mint, chili and ricotta (not on the menu when we went this time, but one I hope they bring back!!)
For price points, Uccellino Appetizers (Antipasti) range from $15-$21. Pastas (Primi) are $22-$28. Secondi (main proteins) $21 – $61 (the $61 dish is the most expensive on the menu and is a full order of their Pollo Al Mattone – chicken cooked under a brick, with salmoriglio sauce and panzanella. I’ve also had this in a past visit, and it is incredible chicken).
As I mentioned, Uccellino is on the pricier end of the eating out spectrum but pasta-wise, reasonable when you consider the costs of pasta dishes elsewhere (that aren’t made from scratch or nearly as good), and when split amongst a group (shared family-style), the price is pretty on par with some of the other, nicer/upscale restaurants in the city. You also have the option of just doing drinks and Sputini – small dishes like the crostini, which would be lower cost, or you can try their Tasting Menu for a bit more (at $80/per person).
In addition to the great taste, Uccellino’s dishes are also beautifully plated! Really, everything at Uccellino just so damn good and I’ve been thrilled with all of my experiences there. I haven’t found the same great experiences at Corso or Bar Bricco, but I absolutely recommend Uccellino. It certainly was a hit with our group this weekend.
Hungry for Italian? Looking for a special occasion restaurant? Just want a nice meal out? Try Uccellino!
I can’t wait for my next visit!!
So have you tried Uccellino? Or the other two Daniel Costa restaurants? What did you think?!
10349 Jasper Ave
Open 7 Days a Week
5 – 10 p.m.