One of Canberra’s most-experienced food critics and this paper’s longest-serving columnist, WENDY JOHNSON indulges herself with her top eating experiences for 2018
A NEW pasta place has popped up on Kingston Foreshore. It will be the third restaurant to open at 17/19 Eastlake Parade and we believe this will be third time lucky.
Prego hasn’t changed the structure of the venue entirely, but it has brightened it up considerably, including with a large, neon-yellow branded light inside, which has quickly become the perfect spot for diners to take a fun selfie or two.
Prego is billed as a “pasta bar”, which means you pick your pasta, pick your sauce and then let the kitchen take it from there.
It’s new… indeed we were there within the first few days of Prego opening and the team is super keen on feedback, to the point that the owner touched base with us during our meal and the chef came out after we’d chowed down to ask for our views. It was impressive.
Pastas include spaghetti, casarecce, fresh chilli fettuccine, gluten-free penne, fresh gnocchi, fresh black-ink spaghetti and fresh lemon and parsley linguine (some pastas you pay a little extra for). Sauces include olive oil (fresh pasta recommended), tomato based and crema.
Staff are knowledgeable and willing to make suggestions. I decided on the carbonara (loving that it’s made the traditional way with egg liaison) and took the recommendation to try it with chilli fettuccine. It was fabulous and not super heavy ($23, with $4 extra for my selection of pasta). There was loads of prosciutto, cut slightly thick for my liking. I told the chef I felt there was too much prosciutto, but agreed this was also a “preference thing” on my part.
One of our large party had the gamberoni with lemon and parsley linguine ($33 with $4 extra for the pasta). The prawns were plump, the garlic at the right level and the chilli gave the right amount of kick. It could have used a bit more seasoning.
The selection of “secondi” dishes is intriguing. The filet mignon looked magnificent on the plate and tasted divine. It came with potato rosti, broccolini and red wine jus and was cooked to perfection ($32).
Wine pairings are available, with Italian wines by a small supplier exclusive to Prego. They were delish.
The atmosphere at Prego is great. It’s relaxed, vibrant and engaging. The outdoor dining area is large and a great spot for absorbing the scenery (and people watching).
It’s exciting to see this new style of Italian on the Foreshore and each every one of us said we’d be back for more (food and fun selfies).
Prego Pasta Bar, 17/19 Eastlake Parade. Kingston Foreshore. Open Tuesday-Thursday, dinner; Friday lunch and dinner; weekends breakfast, lunch and dinner (10 per cent surcharge Sundays and 15 per cent surcharge public holidays). Call 5105 6064.