Athens: simple Italian classics at Capanna
Tasty comfort food, an Italian finesse and some homey interiors is the least you'll find at Capanna Italian restaurant in Kolonaki, Athens, which has been around the block for quite some time now. We simply like to go back and feast over their carbonara pasta and ragu tagliatelle!
Launched back in 2011, Capanna came to serve Athenians their long time favourite, pizza and pasta. And yes, there are so many restos around Athens serving Italian food but Capanna is also a feast to the eye, as the space was created by the K studio team that were also behind a few other memorable projects in Greece (Alemagou in Mykonos included).
Travertine stone, vintage chairs, reclaimed wooden shutters, cement tiles and stucco plastered walls all make for a perfectly balanced setup. As soon as we're seated at the small joint on Haritos pedestrian street of Kolonaki, we are welcomed by some ceremonial pomodorini, focaccia and rock salt - waiting to be dipped in the olive oil that's conveniently left on the table. Take your pick cause they also got a peperoncino-infused one, as well as some aged balsamic vinegar. The wine list is long and we're helped by the waiter who conveniently insists on bringing us something to try y the glass (before we go for the full bottle). Yup, the service is quite personal here and that's how we like it.
Salads aside, which are okayish apart from the delicate and rare to find artichokes one, we move on to our prosciutto rocket pizza that is ready within minutes - the joy of a wood burning oven! The beef carpaccio is also very tender and the hint of lemon and lime juice makes our tastebuds tingle.
Off we go to the main courses and we're in for a real treat: the penne arrabbiata is as spicy as we want it to be with real pomodorini giving out a tangy yet sweet finish (mind you the grated Grana Padano comes handy!). Then there is the creamy carbonara rigatoni with some thick sliced pancetta that's chewy and rich flavoured as hell! And to finish it off, we feast over a ragu tagliatelle sprinkled with some parmesan cheese quickly melting as it goes down... ugh, a bite from heaven!
We're almost full and ready to indulge in the leftovers of our Italian bottle of wine (although they feature many ones from Greece too) when a fine version of the traditional tiramisu arrives. Espresso moist savoiardi in the bottom, thick cocoa powder at the top and a creamy buttery mix in between... come see for yourself, it's definitely one of the best tiramisu around!