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Image 1: www.romecavalieri.com/lapergola Chef: Heinz Beck
This restaurant is on the top floor of Hilton.
Image 2: Tasting menu: €210 9-course; €190 6-course
À la carte: First course about €50; Second course about €55.
Closed on Sunday and Monday.
Closed in the month of January and two weeks in August.
Image 3: We arrived early to enjoy a drink at the terrace with a stunning panoramic view of Rome!
Image 4: The server offered us a 10-page Water Menu with different types of water from all over the world along with a detailed description of each. Some are good for digestion; some stimulate metabolism; some contain a higher level of mineral, etc…
Image 5: The manager was formerly from Louis XV in Monte Carlo. That’s why the water menu and the gold-plated setting reminded us of Louis XV.
Image 6: They quickly brought us an array of spoons - Anchovy with radish; Beef carpaccio; Tuna with asparagus and peach. Our amuse bouche was paired with a glass of Gosset Grande Rosé.
Image 7: More amuse bouche - a variation of tomato: Tomato soup with mozzarella cheese and asparagus. The soup had a nice touch of acidity. A light and refreshing start.
Image 8: Amuse Bouche
Variation of tomato – Stuffed peeled tomato; Tomato with olive oil crisp; Tomato with cheese; Tomato with tuna and cucumber.
Image 9: The first item of the tasting menu was diced sea bass delicately wrapped inside a fragile crispy breaded cannoli, perfectly paired with a sweet cantaloupe and celery salad.
Image 10: Slices of raw tuna resting on top of a layer of quinoa dusted with dehydrated pea purée powder. It was strange to have tuna with this cereal which had a sesame-like but sticky texture.
Image 11: Chef Beck loves his tomato - a combination of delicious prawns and clams with stuffed-tomato green tortellini. A lovely course even though it was dominated by the strong tomato flavour.
Image 12: Medallions of perfectly-timed lobster tail laid on a chilled coconut gal dusted with black pepper. The experience was further enhanced by a spray of vanilla perfume! Yes, a bit gimmicky but who wouldn't like the smell of vanilla!
Image 13: We already had the variation of tomato as an amuse bouche and a tomato stuffed pasta, now another course with tomato?! Amberjack cooked in garlic olive oil with Cannelloni beans and an oddly-paired tomato sauce. It also came with a “salt cod snow” on the side.
Image 14: Green and purple artichokes smothered by smoked corn sauce decorated by a salad with mint and flower.
Image 15: Veal tenderloin marinated with yogurt on a peach purée. This is simply the best-cut of tenderloin. We were amazed by its remarkable tenderness. We had fish filets that were tougher than this piece of meat! Unfortunately, the fruity purée didn’t go well with the meat at all.
Image 16: We did not want cheese so they served another main course! Slices of medium-rare organic pigeon with a creamy pigeon liver sauce. It also came with a refreshing pomegranate ice on the side, but the liver sauce had too strong an unpleasant offal taste.
Image 17: Similar to Louis XV, they changed table setting before desserts.
Pre-dessert, a light refreshment of an interesting apple sorbet with peach sauce. The sorbet contained some sparkling candies causing a stimulating tongue sensation!
Image 18: Our table was then quickly filled with their Grand Dessert starting with a lime soufflé
Image 19: Then Chocolate and Coconut
Image 20: White chocolate meringue
Image 21: Chocolate almond custard
Image 22: Wow, there is more, Coffee ice cream
Image 23: Pina colada – pineapple covered by a tiny sheet of pasta surrounded with rum foam and dusted with pistachio
Image 24: And finally a chocolate tube filled with raspberry cream.
Image 25: A long list of fresh leaf tea imported from various countries. The detailed menu included a suggested infuse time for each tea!
Image 26: An elaborate petits-fours here. A series of freezing spoons with various chocolate filled with ice cream inside.
Image 27: Another set with different types of chocolate!
In summary, I like the service; I like the ambience; and I like the attention to detail; but I don't like the food!
Image 28: Last but not least, a small cabinet with three drawers on each side giving us a total of 12 types of mini-treats.
Image 29: Well, unfortunately we had left most of the petits-fours untouched as we were completely full.