Dining is an adventure that engages all senses. Part of the excitement is discovering new tastes and textures of food, and another part is like a mini travel to a new place and immersing oneself in it. And at Trattoria Nonna Lina, I get exactly what I'm looking for: enjoy a good unique meal at a place like no others in Singapore. Yes, the place feels like an Italian home, super cosy and full of personal touches.

Frittura di Calamari is served in very generous portion, perfect for sharing, but I have no problem finishing it by myself since deep fried squid rings are easy to bite. Tartar sauce is thick and creamy, more nuanced in flavours, going very well with the calamari.

But the real highlight is the arrabbiate sauce, yes, that red sauce. I seldom get arrabbiate sauce served with calamari at other Italian restaurants, so this is quite a new experience, and a good experience at that. With tomatoes as base, this sauce has the refreshing tangy taste that balances well with the seafood flavour of the squid. What makes this sauce special is spicy element from the garlic and red chilli peppers that really kicks things up a notch.

I never knew just chopped tomatoes with herbs and spices on bread can be so good until I have them here at this restaurant. Definitely another unique experience and the spread being handmade really gives that homely feel. The toasted aroma of bread accentuated by the zest of the tomatoes and the pungent flavours of the herbs + spices. The refreshing juices of the tomatoes also goes very well with the crunchy, crispy texture of the toasted bread. This is so good. I also like the pretty tongs that come with the bread and also the calamari, giving that "Come help yourself to these treats" vibe.

Lots of Italian restaurants serve spaghetti but not many serve gnocchi. And this restaurant is one of the few that do. Actually I love gnocchi due to its slightly chewy texture of potato starch. So when I see Gnocchi Mare e Monti on the menu, I immediately order this. Again, this dish has that homely feel where the chef adds in lots of goodies such as large prawns, smoked pork jowl, porcini mushrooms and special secret spicy sauce, which is like wanting the family enjoying a yummy and nutritious meal. I also love this dish a lot. It is so full of flavours and the spicy flavour makes the taste exciting.

Panna Cotta comes in pretty generous portion. The milk pudding is full of milky goodness and is of perfect consistency, being soft and jiggly smooth. The alcohol within adds a kick and refreshing taste to the milk. A very nice dessert to complete the meal with.
Checkered tablecloth, Italian memorabilia and collectibles, quirky quotes and Italian posters, this place is full of personal touches and really feels like a cosy, rustic, comfy Italian home. The service is very welcoming. The young service staff is very efficient, friendly, knowledgable and quick to response to requests. One special noteworthy gesture is that he straightaway pull out a chair to place beside me to put my bags. That's so thoughtful! the Italian guy will serve the dishes with lots of gusto, livening up the atmosphere to make it feel like, well, a home gathering.

Dining here is an experience like no others. This place is definitely worth a trip for that unique experience and the good food, of course.

Thoughts: Loving the Heart-warming Homemade Food here!