Many moons ago…. And we’ll say back in the day when I was spending the majority of my days in the Physics Department at Curtin, a good friend of mine and I used to be particularly partial to the gnocchi sorrentino from Siena’s in Mt Lawley. I had fond memories of our visits there over that time. In recent years however, I have been left slightly wanting on my visits to Siena’s. Doesn’t tend to hold the same charm as my memory suggests.
However, GG and I had to be in Highgate recently, so I suggested we call into Siena’s for a quick bite to eat before our meeting. We arrived fairly early, and thankfully without a booking they were able to find us a seat. Monday through Wednesday are still cheap pizza and pasta nights there, so I thought I would peruse the pasta menu.
While we did that we ordered a serve of garlic bread to kick off proceedings. For $5.50 it was an incredibly big serve, compared with what you get for much higher prices elsewhere, so couldn’t fault the size. It was also red hot, which is always better than cold garlic bread any day of the week. Taste wise though…. Just wasn’t that garlicy. I mean it was fine and it definitely helped fill the void given the ample quanity, and I know this is the second time I’ve ranted on about ungarlicy garlic bread, but please, just wack a bit more on garlic!
So then onto mains….. I went with the Penne al Diavolo ($13.50) which was Penne, spicy Italian sausage, onions, mushrooms, in a chilli tomato sauce. Whenever I go to order pasta there’s always that internal debate between something creamy versus something more tomato. I tend to find creamy pastas just a bit too much, whereas I thought I would have more luck putting a respectable dent in something of the tomato persuasion. Across the table, GG decided to colour outside the lines and ordered Pollo Siena’s ($27.90) which is Chicken breast filled with prawns, spinach and capsicum in a light cream sauce served with roast potatoes and salad.
Again, can’t fault their servings of pasta. Very generous. But I just really didn’t enjoy it. I can understand serving up packet penne pasta, doesn’t strike me as the kinda place that’s out the back hand rolling their pasta, but if you are going to cheat on the pasta then you have to impress me with the sauce. And there was just nothing impressive about this sauce. A fairly thick tomatoy blend, with big chunky bits of Italian sausage, which might work for some folk, but just didn’t do much for me. I felt like I sort of just picked at the noodles and I’m not sure if you could say the dent I put in my plate was even respectable, and I can’t really blame eating two giant slices of garlic bread for that. I just wasn’t that into it. Perhaps I should have gone in with lower expectations for $13.50…. reminded me that quality over quantity is where its at.
Similarly with GG, his stuffed chicken breast was big enough for a growing lad, but taste wise, it was pretty dry (which I can attest to) and the filling was nothing to write home about and there just wasn’t much of it.
I left shaking my head as to why I thought Siena’s would have changed since my last recent visit. I’m likely to not visit again and just live with my happy memories of how their meals used to be.