IT was a brisk Spring night when my partner and I ventured into Lytham for a Thursday evening treat.
Unusual for us to go to such lengths on a school night but we had fancied returning to Novello on Clifton Street for some time and both had a free evening before she disappeared for the weekend to stay with family in Newcastle.
When we arrived the restaurant was busier than expected for a mid-week night and I was glad we had booked a table.
The owner welcomed us in to the bright and modern venue whose walls are splashed with muted tones and artfully unobtrusive canvas prints.
The theme of the property is 21st Century dining of no discerning culture while the menu, placed on our table along with a separate fixed price (or gourmet) sheet was undeniably Italian.
The lighting is relaxed, with candle-lit tables and low level centrepiece chandelier lending the establishment a comfortable atmosphere.
The menu was extensive (although not overly so) and well thought out, meaning some time was spent deciding which delicacies we wanted to sample.
To start with I opted for the Carpaccio di Manzo (thinly sliced fillet of beef with sweet red pepper chilli salsa and parmesan shavings) while my partner opted for the Panne all Aglio (garlic bread) with cheese.
My dish came served on a black slate with the meat forming the base, topped with the salad and cheese and drizzled with olive oil.
The flavours complemented each other well, the freshness of the salad suiting the heavier taste of the meat.
My fiancee’s pizza base was light and crisp, dotted with tasty mozzarella and dripping in luxurious garlic butter.
For our main courses I went back to the cow, opting for the rib eye beef steak with fat chips with aioli.
My partner decided on an Al Pollo pizza which featured tomato, mozzarella, ham, chicken and mushroom, although her request to hold the final ingredient was easily accommodated.
My steak was came rare as requested with crunchy vegetables and crispy chips on the side.
She said her pizza tasted of all natural ingredients and like she was sat by the side of Lake Garda (not that she’s ever been).
The meal, washed down with a few bottles of Peroni, came to just over £50, a bit extravagant for a midweek night out but fairly reasonable for the quality of the food and ambiance.
This end of Lytham has seemed stuck out on a limb recently as the Henry Street area at the other end of town has thrived with the opening of new bars and eateries.
But the opening of the new Weatherspoon pub at the former Hansom Cab is set to re-invigorate the area.
And Novello is doing all the right things to keep packing them in for years to come.
Address: 9 Clifton Street, Lytham
Phone: (01253) 730278
Opening times: Day to Day for lunch from noon to 2pm and dinner from 5.30pm to 10pm.
Parking: On street
Disabled access: Yes
Worth a visit for: Great food and ambiance
One thing I’d change: Slightly pricey