Despite not being a huge fan of one of the Raffles restaurants, that hasn’t put me off trying to others. I’m a huge fan of Pulse – although I’ve never officially reviewed it here – so when we were looking for some Italian food during a shopping trip at the weekend, I suggested Pinocchio’s.

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It was quiet at 12pm but did start to get busier as we neared the end of our meal. Lunch times are great because you can get two courses for £10 and that’s a bargain considering just how much food you do get.

We were offered the £10 lunch menu but my companions needed more choice. We had to ask for the normal menu and the specials. There was so much choice. Meat dishes, pasta and pizza were the stars of the show. I was very, very tempted by the gnocci and the carbonara.

To start, though, I went for the broccoli soup. It was served with some gorgeous focaccia bread. It was a nice thick soup and there was a lot of it. My companions both had garlic bread, two big slabs of buttery, garlicky bread. Beautiful. Once I was done with my soup I was already nearing full and beginning to regret the main course decision I’d made. Pea and Parmesan risotto.

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I’ve only ever had risotto once. I’m not a big rice fan so when eating something that’s difficult to cook it has to be perfect. A huge plate of risotto came out and it looked beautiful. Again, a good-sized portion.

I made a good go of it but didn’t finish it. It was lovely. Nice and creamy with that lovely pop of the peas in every mouthful. It was topped with rocket that wasn’t too overpowering, it was the perfect amount.

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One of my companions had a margherita pizza (I tried some, it was a little over-seasoned with herbs for my taste but most margherita pizzas are). The base was lovely and crisp with a good cheese to tomato ratio.

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My other companion had the tempura prawns (actually a starter). They looked lovely but I didn’t get the chance to try one before they’d all been wolfed down.

Unfortunately it was a no wine day for me so I stuck with water. However, Pinocchio’s does wine tasting evening so I’d love to go along and try a selection. I’m fairly sure that any restaurant that offers wine tasting events is going to have a good selection to accompany your food.

All in all, I’m very impressed. I’d certainly visit Pinocchio’s again. For the three of us we paid £30.30 not including tip.

Pinocchio’s Restaurant
11 St. Benedict’s Street
Norwich
NR2 4PE
(01603) 613 318
www.pinocchiosrestaurant.net

Parking: No dedicated parking but you can park along St. Benedict’s Street or there’s St. Andrew’s car park down the road.

 

 

Pinocchio's, Norwich
Great lunch dealsGood wine listDecent-sized portions
Lacking in atmosphere during a quiet lunchtime
4.3Overall Score
Food
Service
Atmosphere
Price