Whenever I’m in in Leith and in need of a pizza fix, I always make a beeline for La Favorita in Leith Walk. Owned by local Italian restaurant chain Vittoria Group, this restaurant is famous for serving up authentic Italian pizza. But, on a recent trip, I discovered the many other culinary delights “La Fav” has up its sleeve!
Literally a hop, skip and a jump from The Brass Monkey, you’ll find La Favorita around halfway up the main thoroughfare of Leith Walk. Even though the restaurant is sizeable, you’ll often find crowds congregating outside and so I’d advise you to book a table if you are thinking of making a visit at the weekend. However, once you’re sat down you’ll realise why La Fav is such an institution…
Bring on the pizza
Now there’s one main reason I go to La Favorita – and that’s their Montanara pizza (pictured above). It’s a pretty simple combo of sausage, mushroom and mozzarella cheese, but it is executed brilliantly. The dough is thin and crispy, just the way I like it, and the sausage they use is out of this world. But for me, the thing that sets this pizza off is the mushrooms. Normally I detest mushrooms on pizza, but La Favorita do something before they put them on, marinate them in a magic sauce or something, and it makes the world of difference. If you don’t know which pizza to go for, I would highly recommend this one!
It’s not all about the pizza…
At a recent trip to La Favorita, I discovered that this restaurant was capable of so much more than pizza. I went with a couple of girlfriends, and to my complete shock and horror, they both ordered a non-pizza based main! Had they lost their minds?! As their plates arrived at the table, I realised they might be on to something. My pescetarian friend ordered the shrimp risotto, and I must say I got major plate envy when it was served. It was just a perfect portion and she said the shrimps were absolutely delicious.
My other friend ordered the chicken and broccoli pasta, and was equally pleased with her choice. The sauce was creamy without being too heavy, and she said that the broccoli didn’t overpower the dish, which is a mean feat considering broccoli can have quite a strong flavour.
Dessert at La Favorita
If the pizza is the number one reason that people queue out the door of La Favorita, then the desserts must surely be a close second.
Once I made the rookie error of ordering a starter and a main without leaving room for dessert – never again. Don’t get me wrong, the starters at La Fav are divine as well, but I remember looking forlornly at the decadent sundaes knowing that I wouldn’t be able to eat a single bite without exploding.
So if you’re like me and have a stomach smaller than the ideal, I would give the starters a miss and save yourself for dessert. The Vittoria Group has an original selection of ice creams in a wide range of flavours that are absolutely delicious. You can’t really go wrong with whatever flavour you choose, but I would personally recommend the hazelnut flavour!
If your belly can take a little bit more, then I would definitely take the plunge and try one of their fabulous ice cream sundaes. As I am such a fan of their hazelnut ice cream, their Coppa Rocher sundae, with whipped cream and Mutella sauce, went down an absolute treat at the end of the meal.
So what do you guys think? Am I right to go for the Montanara pizza every time? Is there another combo I should try instead? I’d love to hear your thoughts – so hit me up in the comments below!