We’re kicking off our brand new journal with a look at one of Cambridge’s best culinary spots. It’s unassuming on the outside, but the inside boasts a concoction of flowery adornments, an inviting wall of coffees, pastas and sweet treats, and an extremely instagrammable picture wall. Limoncello is our top choice for a modern but authentic Italian dining experience in the city.
Now, Cambridge has its fair share of amazing Italian restaurants, but let me tell you why Limoncello in particular deserves a visit. Firstly, it’s located on Mill Road - which, if you’re familiar with it, says it all in terms of fantastic eateries. It’s the perfect location for this family-owned Italian deli, which extends back into an all-weather sunset garden, a wonderful spot for the outdoor dining experience we’ve all come to love - even in November!
From an extensive menu of Italian classics to more experimental dishes - many suitable for vegetarians - complemented by a lengthy drinks menu, we certainly did struggle to pick our ideal three-course meal. But we got there in the end, and so here are our recommendations for a perfect evening at Limoncello.
We opted for a very rich fruity red, a perfect comforting wine as the wintery weather creeps in. The Planeta Nero D'avola Sicilia (2018), with its aromas of plum, cocoa and wild strawberries, was our first excellent choice.
Starters are my favourite course by far, so it was a true struggle to choose between the many delicious options on the menu. But the Limoncello antipasti board comprises many of the meats and cheeses you can find on the deli counter, so it seemed like a great way of sampling their selection. Available for one person or to share between two (if you opt for the sharing board just for yourself, we’re not judging), this starter makes for a very tasty option.
Not a meat lover? A very popular alternative at our table was the burrata salad with sun blushed tomatoes and fresh pesto. The burrata is very good, and you can add a whole one to any main course for an extra £4.95.
Oh, the truffled tagliatelle. An indulgent, taste-bud tingling creamy main that filled us up (but which could leave the more ravenous among us wanting more). It was cooked al dente to my liking and the addition of Italian sausage was sublime. Someone at our table remarked that ‘paired with a good wine, I felt as though I were in an Italian castle, bereft only of a Vivaldi quartet serenading me in the background’. If that comment alone doesn’t convince you I’m not sure what will!
More of a pizza fan? Try the tasty aubergine and smoked scamorza cheese topping.
Don’t be fooled by the small selection of desserts, because they are a terrific trio. I went for the homemade tiramisu - bonus points for the extra birthday candle on this occasion - which was creamy and rich. This was an ideal way to finish the evening, and it is safe to say I couldn’t eat another bite on completion of this much-loved classic.
Not convinced by the melty caffeinated goodness? Go for the pear & chocolate torte.
And finally - it’s in the name - the limoncello deserves its very own section. Because when life gives you lemons, make a sweet, zesty liqueur, and give it to your customers for free at the end of their meal.
That’s right - shout about Limoncello on Instagram or Facebook (and trust me, you’ll want to), and get a free limoncello shot to top off a great evening. Non è fantastico?
Word has it that the cocktails are brilliant too - we’ll be trying a limoncello spritz on our next visit. But for now - ciao ciao!
Please note that as this article was written in October 2021, and as Limoncello changes their menu seasonally, the selection may have changed since.