Many moons ago I visited Christina’s in Vic Park for a work dinner. It was a while ago but my one recollection of the place was that the servings were giant. So when a return visit was proposed for a catch up with a few friends recently I was curious to see if my memories were correct.
Our group of 4 was seated outside, which was actually really pleasant on the warmer evening. Two ladies had arrived before me and they had already ordered a drink, but it only took a few minutes from me sitting to have a drink of my own in hand. Very prompt service. We waited for our final dining companion to arrive and then set about perusing the menu. I’d recently enjoyed a beautiful creamy pasta dish at a local establishment, closer to home, so when I saw a similar option, but in ravioli available on the menu I was tempted. I then looked over and saw Veal Scallopini al Funghi ($28.00) – Cooked in a creamy mushroom sauce, served with chips and salad and I was majorly torn! I decided since I’d recently enjoyed pasta that I would go for the veal, especially as it came with chips and salad. Ms E ordered the Fegato – Lambs fry and bacon. Our own version of this internationally popular dish with creamy mash ($27.00), a more bold selection I thought. And in an interesting move, Miss A and Miss C put their decision in the knowledgeable hands of the waiter. He was confident that they would both be happy with his choices. Time would tell.
While we waited for our mains we snacked on the garlic bread we had ordered. It was decent garlic bread and I found out that Miss C doesn’t eat garlic. I’d be really sad if I couldn’t eat garlic, such an amazing flavour, especially in bread form, well garlic bread form
Thankfully for our non-garlic bread eater, it didn’t take too long for our mains to be delivered. I was happy I’d gone with the veal. There were ample slices of the tender meat in a wonderfully creamy mushroom sauce, which worked a treat as a dipping sauce for the mountain of chips! My memory had served me well on the meal sizes front! Very, very big. I ate all the veal, put a respectable dent in the chips and polished off most of the salad. I was grateful for the refreshing salad to finish as the creamy sauce got quite rich.
My sister, Miss A, was presented with her surprise dish – Calamari Salara – Deep fried calamari piled high with avocado, dressed with a tangy lemon/lime sauce ($28.00). It was another mountain. Lightly breaded squid rings on top of an abundance of fresh salad. Most of us tried some of the calamari and everyone enjoyed it, though I sampled a slice when it was perhaps a little colder than ideal, which may have swayed my opinion of it slightly. Can’t fault their generosity with the seafood though!
Miss C was pleasantly surprised with the selection made for her, Fettuccine Con Pollo – Fettuccine with tender chicken pieces, garlic and mushrooms in a special cream sauce with a touch of chilli ($29.00). Big chunky pieces of chicken, in amongst the mushroom and creamy sauce. The pasta itself was lovely. Had a home made taste to it, those beautiful green ribbons. Miss A and Miss C shared their two dishes amongst themselves and half a pasta dish, along with half a salad seemed to be an appropriate pairing, as I know personally I struggle through a giant bowl of pasta solo. So as far as experiments go, with letting the waiter pick for you, I think both ladies were fairly happy.
While Miss E admitted that perhaps her dish was better suited to wintery weather, with the mashed potatoes and rich gravy, she did still thoroughly enjoy it. I sampled some of the liver and while I’m not a massive fan by any means, teamed with the bacony sauce, it was ok.
On the dessert front, we kept things simple and worked our way through a large sundae glass of vanilla ice-cream, while we chatted further over coffees. It had been a pleasant night. Christina’s is a family friendly restaurant, with helpful waiters and ample servings of home-style food. I would argue that not many would leave hungry.