I’d wanted to visit Zucchini Pasta Bar a few times since it first opened a year ago, but I never found the opportunity. The Newcastle Pasta Bar is located on what I call the Magic Roundabout, previously Swan House Roundabout, but also known as 55 degrees north. You will have driven past it 100 times. It offers a Pasta Takeaway menu as well as a sit-in menu.
Zucchini Pasta Bar Newcastle
It’s also not that often that I review a restaurant that I’ve done work for, but this is how I came about this visit. Alan (a brilliant name!) contacted us to redo his wall menu. We’d previously done the first version when he first opened. This time, there were tweaks to the meals he was offering. One of the items (Item 8) was a Spaghetti Carbonara. Which I totally love. In fact, I’m not sure of another Pasta Takeaway near me that does fresh pasta.
Spaghetti Carbonara – Guanciale, Parmesan, Egg York & Black Pepper £6. It’s been ages since I’ve had a good Carbonara and I honestly started to obsess over this while I made the menu sign. I didn’t even know what Guanciale was, but I was guessing the bacon/meat.
So I had a plan. Install Zucchini’s Pasta Menus and then grab some lunch. To avoid the public we installed the job and left by 11.00 a.m. Food was served at 12.00 noon, so I had to come back later.
By 1 pm the place was a bustling busy restaurant. It never dawned on me that it was a restaurant and not just a take-out place. Then I started to wonder if it was a takeout place or was I about to be sitting down in work boots and brick dust amongst well-dressed office workers. So to clear this up, they are sit in and take out.
All food is cooked to order and the pasta is made fresh. This means there is a slight delay between placing the order and the food being served, but freshness is the key part of Zucchini’s meals.
My meal was bundled into a bag and I walked quickly to my van, to drive back to Brunswick Industrial estate (about a 20-minute drive). Throughout the drive, I’d thought about having to microwave my meal when I got in.
Spaghetti Carbonara – Zucchini Pasta Bar
Despite my heat concerns, it was still piping hot when I got in. The carton was filled up with fresh spaghetti and sauce, topped off with parmesan cheese (which by now had melted on the top). Inside my bag was also a thick slice of warm sour dough bread with olive oil drizzled on top.
OMG! This was without any lie, exaggeration or customer loyalty the best I’ve had. The Guanciale was thick bites and had plenty of texture. The creamy sauce clung to the thick spaghetti strands. Although it mentions Pepper on the menu, I didn’t realize how integral it would be in the sauce. It had a good kick to it that warmed as it went down. If I’d been offered fresh pepper on top at a restaurant I would have said no, but maybe I’ve been missing out all this time.
What had looked like a smallish portion in the paper bag, turned out to be a full portion that really filled me up. I finished it all off and didn’t really want to do the afternoon shift.
I was so glad I made the effort and visited Zucchini. It is tucked away a little bit on the roundabout but is tastier than any food I’ve had from the cheap Italian restaurants we usually visit.
For more details about Zucchini Pasta bar visit their website at http://www.zucchinipastabar.co/