With so many Italian restaurants in town, it takes a lot for a newly opened restaurant to stand out. Matto surely stands out in the crowd with an amazing vibe, authentic Italian food, great service and a team that knows Italian food very well.

We were here one afternoon and we totally loved it. The place was so vibrant on a weekday afternoon and I am certain that on a weekend it will be truly awesome. The place is done up so well and once you are inside the restaurant you don’t feel like its part of the Oberoi Hotel. Everything looks so quirky be it the wall with a graffiti of a man kissing a fish (or probably eating it), the furniture or even the DJ console that seems like it is placed on a scooter.

The staff are from Italy and are very hospitable. They are great with their recommendations of the food and you could go with the suggestions blindly (this is if you know Italian food). We were served by Fabio and Giuseppe.

They have newly introduced their Business lunch which has a good variety of starters and main course and you can select one of each for Dhs. 35 and Dhs 55 respectively. We tried a few dishes from the Business lunch and some from the regular menu.

From the Business lunch, we started our meal with the Bruschettone which is the famous gilled bread with cherry tomatoes, melted cheese, garlic and basil pesto. The ingredients were fresh and the bread was grilled to perfection. The basil pesto added to the flavour.

Continuing the selection from the Business lunch, from the mains, we called for a Insalata Caprese that had mozzarella, plum tomatoes, mixed leaves, oregano and basil in extra virgin olive oil. If you love cheese, this is the healthiest it can get and you will for sure enjoy it.

For the drinks we called for a Belluci that has fresh blueberries and blackberries, violet, basil, lime juice in sparkling water. We also called for Amaro Mio that had a crodino bitter, fresh passion fruit and mandarin in a homemade sage syrup. The drinks were great and very different. The Belluci was very soothing and the Amaro Mio was sour yet very nice.

From the regular menu, we called for a Burrata Pugliese in the starters. The apulian burrata, mixed cherry tomatoes, toasted almonds, marinated zucchini with basil pesto is as authentic as it can get. Again a very personal preference, if you love burrata, then there is no way you won’t like this.

From the mains in the regular menu, we called for a Spigola In Crosta, a baked sea bass with a zucchini crust, potato rosti and red capsicum cream. The sea bass was baked to perfection and with the crispy zucchini and potato fingers it tasted delicious. A must try for sea food lovers !

You can’t not eat a pasta when you are in an Italian restaurant. We called for the Astice which was the homemade butterfly pasta with lobster, tomato sauce, chilli and parsley. The lobster meat was extremely fresh and the pasta in the tomato sauce was good.

When in Italy, eat the Tiramisu. When in an Italian restaurant, do the same ! We called for the Tiramisu – a generous portion of this dish and amazingly authentic.

We also called for the Striscette, I’d say these are the Italian version of the churros. They were lightly fried dough strips coated with icing sugar and served with nutella. I could not believe that they were fried as we were stuffing our faces with the Striscette dipping them in nutella.

Italian cuisine is one of my favourite European cuisines and this place surely creates nostalgia by serving such authentic tasting food. Keep up the good work Team Matto.










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