Autostrada/Downtown (Vancouver)

Autostrada is a small chain (3 restaurants so far) of Italian restaurants in Vancouver focusing on simple, yet excellent executed dishes. Chef Syme background in more chef-driven places is quite obvious as many dishes appear at first glance simple and straightforward but later reveal surprising nuances which elevate the dishes. The downtown restaurant we visited is a lively neighborhood restaurant every part of a city needs.

Piatto Misto Salumi - prosciutto di parma, Italian salumi - small but tasty selection. The focaccia, baked in-house, is a highlight

Insalata di Stagione - daily changing salad - today a mix of different types of salad, watermelon radish, ricotta salata and wonderful complex raspberry-mustard vinaigrette

Polpette al Sugo - meatballs, pomodoro, pecorino - Dense but yet light meatballs in a bright tomato sauce

Olive Miste - marinated olives - served slightly warm

Risotto della Casa - today’s risotto variation with asparagus and morels - nicely captures the current morel season

Fusilloni con Salsiccia - fennel sausage ragu, peas, pecorino - nicely spiced sausage ragu with good, al dente pasta

Ripiena - daily stuffed pasta -today’s version of agnolotti filled prosciutto, potato and ricotta - excellent house-made pasta with a tasty filling

Salted Caramel Tarte - Very good version which wasn’t overly sweet but had a nice balance between sweet and salty

Tiramisu - One of the better tiramisu’s we had in quite sometime which again was very well balanced between the different ingredients, e.g. sweet (mascarpone, sugar), bitter (coffee) and tart (cocoa)