Saturday 18 April 2015

Calabrisella, Italian restaurant, Cardiff review

Calabrisella isn’t much of a looker.

With its brick effect wallpaper, budget furniture and tatty bits of paper plastered across its windows, you could easily mistake this Canton-based Italian eatery for a greasy spoon caff and give it a miss.

However, if you did that then you’d be depriving yourself of some of the best Italian food in Cardiff.

Whilst pizzas are the forte of the house, breakfasts, sandwiches, pastas and other daily specials feature on the menu – there were two types of calamari and a steak on offer the night we visited.

To start, a whopper of a golden crumbed arancino (£2) erupted with perfectly cooked risotto (each grain still distinct), oozy cheese and meaty Bolognese.

A pair of beers – a Peroni red (£2.50) and an Ichnusa (£2.50) – brought memories of holidays in Italy flooding back. 

Pizzas were stunning, each comprised of a golden crust and a millimetre thin base topped with perky tomato sauce and melted mozzarella. They were also the size of a car tyre.

For Mrs G, a Roma (£8.50) topped with tender chicken, mushrooms and funky, creamy gorgonzola.

For me, a Calabrisella (£10.90) capped with unctuous, fiery nduja sausage and sundried tomatoes with a pleasing bite. 

I took advantage of an excellent value £10 meal deal offering any pizza, fries and a soft drink.

The chips were fine but nothing remarkable whilst a can of Chinotto once again left me questioning how a drink which tastes like cough medicine can be so delicious. 

Mrs G and I were both stuffed so we doggy-bagged the equivalent of nearly a whole pizza… and then moved onto dessert.

A generous slate of tiramisu (£3.50) was everything it should be – moist, boozy, chocolatey and creamy. 

We had a superb meal at Calabrisella and the owner gave us a very warm welcome. My advice, ignore the wallpaper and just enjoy the great value and seriously delicious Italian food.

The Details:

Address - Calabrisella, 154 Cowbridge Road East, Cardiff CF11 9ND
Telephone - 029 2022 5839
Web -


  1. Bob the Builder30 June 2015 at 09:46

    When we are working in Pontcanna we often call in there for one of their fabulous breakfasts, how they can serve a meal so good at the price (£ 3.50 ) is amazing !, we also double back at lunchtime for some of the superb takeaway snacks they have on offer.
    don't be fooled by the D.I.Y shopfitting and awfull wallpaper, this is one to try , just like we did ... and then just keep going back , just like we do !!.

  2. Completely agree!!! Found this restaurant at lunchtime today & it was fab!!!!
    Will definitely be going back. The seafood risotto was amazing & so were the pizzas!!!

    1. @Zoe - Glad you enjoyed. I haven't tried the risotto as I'm always too tempted by their pizzas!