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The Pizza Express Family Christmas Menu: Review

Our top family-friendly restaurant presents a new menu for the festive season

Posted: 2 December 2013
by Fiona McKim

Arancini Ragu
Trifolata pizza
Snowball dough balls

There is something comforting about the familiarity of Christmas Dinner – same bird, same piggy, same crispy roasties – and the same could be said about family-friendly Pizza Express. When your family's peckish and you don’t want to risk your dinner on an unknown quantity, there she is, all child-friendly service and reassuringly consistent Italian dishes. That’s not to say the super-successful pizza specialists have been resting on their Junior Design Award winning laurels. Oh no, the menu is privy to regular seasonal updates, so we thought it only right to head along of an evening and sample its current incarnation – Christmas.

What's on the menu?

Well, all your favourite pizza and pasta dishes (including the diet-friendly Leggera) but also, some seasonal specialties that demand to be sampled. To start we ordered Contadino, a hearty sausage and lentil stew with dough sticks, and four morsels of, canapé du jour, Arancini. The warming stew was the pick of the bunch, with a whiff of aniseed from the fennel and deep salty flavor oozing out of the sausage into the rich tomato-packed passata. The arancini, while always good fun, were a tad tight in texture while the rocket accompaniment was looking a little sad and naked without so much as a vinaigrette to cover its modesty. Now, on to the main event – the limited edition Christmas pizzas. We picked two - the Trifolata Romana – a super crispy pie topped with an array of gourmet fungi, Italian taleggio and truffle oil, and the Porchetta Romana – another super-crisp base, this time smothered in mozzarella and sweet scrumpy apple sauce with thick slices of pork belly and a smattering of crackling on top. The verdict? Ho, ho, how can you not serve the Trifolata all year round? The rich umami savouriness of the truffle oil and mushrooms was perfectly offset by the tang of tallegio. The Porchetta was a hit too, the apple sauce’s sweetness just offsetting the salty richness of the pork belly and the crackling offering a satisfying crunch with every bite.  We finished with the Snowball Doughballs, basically your regular dough balls, trussed up like the proverbial turkey with a sprinkling of cinnamon and addictive vanilla cream dip. Delicious!

The essential info

The Pizza Express Christmas menu is available now until January 5, 2014

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