Wednesday 9 October 2013

Imperialino restaurant, Grand Hotel Imperiale, Lake Como, Italy

The view across Lake Como from the bar in front of the Imperialino restaurant
In an enviable location on the shores of beautiful Lake Como, the Imperialino has tables inside (a glass box) and outside on a terrace with charming views across the water. The tables are covered in thick white tablecloths, the plates are heavy and the table decorations are elaborate. The reasonably-priced menu is decidedly Italian, but it has some unusual dishes and the food is refined and well-presented. However, it doesn't blow you away. The blueberry and shrimp risotto, for example, is pleasant, but the flavours are quite subtle and the portion is modest for 14 euros. Moreover, service by the formally-attired waiters can be a bit uptight.  If you try and order a hot desert (between 10 and 14 euros), for example, you might get a stern warning that it will take 15 minutes to come. The Imperialino may be a tad complacent, but in such a stunning setting, it can probably afford to be. 7/10