Walking into Saluti is like stumbling into an Italian flag. The pasta restaurant on Amman Square is covered in green, white and red, decorated with glass containers of different types of uncooked pasta.
Actually, the pasta is everywhere, on the walls, on the shelves and even under the glass covering the white tables. You can even smell it being cooked.
In a small setting of no more than eight tables, the open kitchen permits the aroma of all those fresh ingredients put onto the pasta – or pizza, depending on your choice – to whet the appetite of the waiting clients.
While waiting, we devoured Saluti’s freshly baked garlic bread and cheese-covered toast. We also dug into a Chicken Caesar Salad (LE 14), whose creamy dressing was just perfect.
I chose the Frutti Di Mare (LE 28) with fettuccini pasta. It wasn’t as delicious as the aroma suggested. Don’t get me wrong, I did enjoy the juicy pasta and the generous portion of calamari and shrimp. But, like their Pizza Seafood (LE 30), it could have made use of more herbs and spices to add a unique flavor.
My friends’ choices, however, were much more appealing. The Chicken BBQ (LE 25) with farafelle pasta combined different flavors I hadn’t experienced before, at least not in the same bite. I couldn’t help but keep “sampling this unique dish, dipping my fork in my friend’s plate time after time. Of course, I comforted myself that the generous portions would make my repeated indulgences in my friend’s dish seem insignificant.
I was right, she was quite full by the end of the meal.
But this wasn’t the only dish that witnessed my repeated “sampling – all for the sake of this review of course. The Beef Pepper Sauce (LE 30) with penne pasta was quite tempting as well. My friend complained it was too spicy. But for me, a loyal fan of anything that’s spicy, it was just right.
The best item on the menu, and probably Saluti’s signature dish, which I only got to taste on a second visit to the restaurant, is the Pavarotti (LE 22), a mix of eggplant slices baked with cheese, mozzarella and penne pasta tossed in a rich creamy tomato sauce. It really tickles your taste buds, but could be too heavy for the diet conscious amongst us.
During my two visits to Saluti, I never got a chance to order dessert. I always leave too full to even think about food. Their dessert menu is still limited, with only five entries including the staples of brownies, cheesecake and ice cream.
The two-month old restaurant will start delivery services this week, but eating there is much better than ordering. The place is capably run by Sherif El Geoushy, the man behind Sidi Mansour and Fashion Café, along with two partners. And aside from the plasma screen tuned to Fashion TV, Saluti offers a great casual dining or lunch experience, with attentive service and a relaxing atmosphere.
At the very least, you get to enjoy cheese as it melts in the hot creamy pasta.
Saluti8 Amman Square, Dokki33373525