Tuesday, 13 March 2012
Veduta, Rabat, Malta
A restaurant has to be something special for me to visit it 3 times in 1 week. It needs to offer fantastic service, a varied menu, affordable prices and as the estate agents say, location, location, location. Veduta fitted all these requisites.
The location of this restaurant was a deciding factor as to why I ate here a whopping 3 times in 2010 and made a return visit 2 years later. Nestled high up in the hills of Malta, this restaurant is situated in the village of Rabat (not to be confused with the capital of Morocco),a stones throw from the ancient walled city of Mdina (not to be confused with the similarly-named Tunisian town!) This area was formerly an Arabic settlement, so sit back and absorb the history while eating here.
TIP: do what I done on my first lunch visit- make a day of it. Take a day trip to the Silent City of Mdina, go for a stroll down the ancient passages and after all that walking, chill out at Veduta for lunch! Ignore the tourist-priced cafes in Mdina itself.
It is better to visit the restaurant twice as you will have two very different experiences of a day and a night. you see, the main attraction of this restaurant is its panoramic view over Malta itself. On a clear day, you can see the coast, mountains, and surrounding villages. If you're like me and a bit of a plane geek, it has an advantageous view of the airport! However, of an evening when the sun sets, the restaurant takes on a very romantic, intimate atmosphere. The sky turns a turquoise blue, the stars (and planes!) twinkle, and if you're lucky, the fireworks from a local festival will light up the sky.
The service was professional and always with a smile, willing to help and not as intrusive as some of these annoying restaurants. (You know what I mean, 'are you okay guys' every five minutes. Yes, chains, I mean you!) The food prices were higher than average- Pizzas and pastas around the 8 € mark, but desserts and drinks were the going rate for Malta. (coffees around 1.50€). The menu was a delight for vegetarians- rustic pizzas with succulent aubergines, pastas ranging from the creamy to the fiery, salads consisting of a cornucopia of capers, cheese and crunchy peppers. I had a mixed vegetable pizza, a spinach and gorgonzola farfalle and always the vindaloo queen, I chose a 'spaghetti esplosiva' (above) as my Last Supper in 2010. It did what it said on the tin, this pasta was explosive. Imagine crossing Arrabiata with Vindaloo with a dash of Szechuan sauce- well, this is what this pasta was. It should come with a warning, only suitable for hardcore Vindaloo Kings and Queens. Needless to say, I had the Esplosiva again on my 2012 return.
For the carnivores, check out this beefburger- great mix of naughty and nice:
This is the perfect restaurant for encapsulating the holiday mood and taking some memorable holiday snaps. The meals may not be pushing the imagination or be the cheapest on the island, but good service and fabulous panoramic views more than make up for it.