Best Part: The Pizza was just really good
You don’t have to be cool and grey to serve one of the best lunches in St Albans!
Now, the Cosa Nostra is an alternate name for the Sicilian Mafia, but I am definitely not going to be especially favourable to them to avoid any retribution. There is no need as we had a thoroughly pleasant time. I was actually on my way to lunch at Chez Mumtaj (which is not an alternate name for the French-Indian mafia) but my dedication to you, dear reader, was such that I willingly ate a starter here and then went on to eat another starter and a main course elsewhere rather than deny you my opinion on a local eating establishment.
La Cosa Nostra sits in what could almost be someone’s front room. It is the very definition of a neighbourhood establishment, albeit a neighbourhood with another Italian restaurant/deli a couple of doors down. It doesn’t try to overreach itself, but does what it does efficiently and with a minimum of fuss. And unlike most St Albans local Italian restaurants it is not housed in an old public toilet.
Due to my other commitments I consigned myself to a starter, and of course this means deep fried cheese. Breaded Mozzarella Parcels, to be precise. They were a generous portion, and very tasty. They were possible not as breaded as I would like, and the ooze was a trifle disappointing, but I am potentially penalising it for not being deep fried brie. They were served with a very tasty side salad, and a lovely tangy dressing, and if I am moved enough to praise salad you know it must be good.
Astonishingly, my starter ended up being more expensive than my one-lunch-only wife’s meal. She went for the lunch deal, which delivers either a pizza or a pasta dish plus a drink for £6.95 which is certainly good value but Mrs Midweek lunch’s pizza was of such a fabulous quality that she was actually worried about robbing the management! The base was thin and crispy and the toppings well balanced and presented. She was pleased to have several vegetarian pizzas to choose from too and it was a tough decision but she selected the Giardiniera. It is not just vegetarians that have a good ride here. La Cosa Nostra cater for Gluten free diets and positively welcome children in fact there were two very happy children munching away while we dined. In the past our own fussy offspring have happily devoured smaller portions of grown up food here. This is great because it encourages them to eat the food we like rather than just chicken dippers, chips and no vegetables. Thanks Cosa Nostra, we value your family friendly attitude.
We were pushed for time as I needed to make it to lunch 2, but this wasn’t an issue at all. Service was slick and quick without being even noticeable. There were probably more employees and their pals than there were patrons, but that added to the family feel of the place. So it may not be the most glamourous of locations, it may not have a particular buzz and no part of it was painted grey, but it was a lovely place to get a very reasonable and satisfying lunch, and I would be happy to have somewhere similar in my neighbourhood.