Muddy eats: Castello, Frome
I just wanted to bash out a quick post about an independent, family-run Italian restaurant that the Muddies and I discovered last week: it’s got a great atmos, a big menu, big pizzas and pepper grinders to match.
If you live in Frome, you’ll already know Castello (when we arrived at 5.30 it was empty; by 6.30 it seemed like half the town was there) but if you don’t – then you’re in for a treat.
It’s a vast place (140 covers) set over two levels with more large rooms and another bar off the main seating area. It’s got a retro, ‘continental’ style, a bit like a 1950s coffee bar – check out those red ‘leather’ banquettes…
… the ‘logs’ on the walls…
…and the retro room dividers which had a slightly odd – but sort of charming – display of panattoni, honey, bottles of olive oil, jars of pasta and packets of arborio rice and for some reason, boxes of Twinings tea (?!).
The menu’s vast with long lists of starters (breads, squid, prawns, soup, tricolore, cured meats etc), the usual range of pizzas, calzone, pastas, risottos, some Greek-style dishes, fish and seafood and various steaks and other meat dishes. Desserts include semifreddo, tiramisu, limoncello trifle.
The Muddies loved watching their pizzas being made through a window into the kitchen; the chefs throw the dough to each other and (apparently) sometimes burst into song.
The pizzas got the thumbs up from the Muddy table.
The staff are very friendly and chatty; if you’ve been once before they always remember you, and it’s handshakes all round when you arrive and leave. The service itself was fast and efficient.
Combine a visit here with a trip to the quirky independent Westway cinema (review to follow soon).
Good for: families, groups of friends, anyone with something to celebrate – it’s got a fun, vibrant atmosphere and staff are super friendly – you’d be fine here on your own, too
Not for: those who like to eat in a hushed environment
£££: Reasonable. Pizzas £9.95-11.95, pasta around £12; fish dishes £14-16; steaks £16.99-19.99. Lunch time Mon-Fri 12am-3pm, any pasta or pizza £6.95.
17 Palmer St, Frome, BA11 1DS. Tel 01373 228100.castellofrome.co.uk
17 , BA11 1DS