Sunday, July 22, 2007

Little Roma - La Mesa CA

In a small strip mall off of Lake Murray Blvd and Baltimore Drive you will find Little Roma. A family run place that has been open for 9 years and run by Guiseppe from Porticello Sicily. A truly nice man and a quaint neighborhood restaurant. Good prices for the area. Plates range from $2.50 for a bowl of soup to around 8 bucks for a pasta dish. Today Sue and I went in for lunch. a torpedo and meatball sandwich sounded great for a late afternoon meal. We were greeted by the owner and sat near the front of the place. there were 2 other couples eating. Little Roma has a nice wine menu with nice quality selections at a very good prices. We ordered a bottle of Merlot from Maddalena Vineyard out of Los Angeles? never heard of this place, but the owner suggested we try it. $17.00 a bottle. Very nice wine. You know Merlot has been given such a bad name over the last few years and undeservedly so. Done right, it can be liquid heaven. This wine was just that. Very smoky but light, with hits of cherry and apricots. Like a very nice Bordeaux. Excellent selection. We will search for this Winery in our local wine shops.

We of course ordered the obligatory Antipasta to go with our wine and sandwiches. Done very nicely. nice and crisp greens and run of the mill but tasty no less, The standard cuts rolled and piled on top. Provolone cheese, mortadella and a mild salami. A little olive oil and way to much red wine vinegar. But over all a good value at under 5 bucks.

The owner came by and asked us about the wine and chatted a little with us. Seems he suffers from what a lot of people who own restaurants do. Burn out. it was a Saturday and he was musing about wanting to be somewhere else than here. I can understand that. It takes such a passion and desire to run a food establishment. And that passion always shows in the food and service. So far service great. To much information from the owner.

Soon the food arrived. My torpedo looked good from the outside. The bread was nicely toasted and similar in texture to a light French style loaf that many Asian restaurants use. very nice. when in an Italian restaurant I never ask for anything special like, what comes on the torpedo sandwich. I always am curious as to how each place has there own version. This one right away I noticed this yellow streak of mustard on the bread. Mustard? on a torpedo? Fugget about it! Strike one. A true Italian sandwich has no mustard or mayo. only red wine vinegar and olive oil.

Filled with the usual stuff. shredded lettuce. Mild flavored cuts of meat. standard stuff. $5.95 on the menu.

Sue on the other hand had the toasted meatball sandwich. $6.95 on the menu. The owner brought it out to us and quickly exclaimed that if it was to "toasted" for us he would have the guy make another one. It was a little on "toasted" side, but Sue never complains. it was OK by her.

Me, I might have sent it back. Although on the dark side. the meatball sandwich looked good. stuffed with an overload of cheese oozing out everywhere. looked mighty tasty. The bread was the same as the torpedo. nice and light. The sauce was very mild and nothing to scream about. The meatballs on the other hand were very dense and thick. you could tell that they were made in a mixer and mixed for awhile. which is the death of all meatballs. makes them hard and chewy. no taste in these at all. like little rocks of cardboard.
It is really tough to find good eating establishments sometimes. It all goes back to that passion thing. I never really understand why people get into the restaurant business that have no taste or passion for food.
Standard fair here. Go for the owner, he is s nice guy and will chat with you for as long as you like.
Sometimes that alone can be a food of comfort for the soul.
Little Roma
5575 Baltimore Drive
La Mesa Ca
619) 461-7000

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...