Restaurant Review: Bottelino's, Bath

I think I should preface this review by telling you upfront that Bottelino’s in Bath (click here to go to the website) serves possibly the best pizza I’ve ever eaten. And I’ve eaten quite a lot of pizza. Plus – listen up, my fellow students – every day from Monday to Saturday, at lunchtimes and in the early evening, all their pizzas and pasta dishes are £6, which considering the quality of the food is a fantastic offer. So if you’re put off by the fact that it’s a chain, or you’ve eaten in another branch and been disappointed, I beg you to give it another chance.

For a start, if you didn’t already know it was a chain, I don’t believe you’d notice. The waiters are friendly and charming, and almost all of them are Italian. The décor is, I must admit, slightly naff – but in a lovably genuine way. Yes, there are raffia-wrapped chianti bottles, paintings of Italia on the walls and postcards from regulars pinned to the bar, but there is no sense of objects mandated and mass-produced by head office – these are personal touches. The service is swift and thoughtful. And the food is really, really good.

My personal recommendation would be the Gino Rosso pizza, which combines passata, garlic, cheddar & mozzarella cheeses, and fresh basil. You may be thinking that sounds like a bog-standard Margherita, but in my defence I offer two points. First of all, this is one instance where simplicity really does work. The flavours are fresh, bold and well-balanced. Secondly, many pizza purists insist that there are only two truly Italian pizzas, and one of them is the Margherita. However, if you’re still hesitant, I would also heartily recommend the salmon linguini, which is sumptuously rich and decadently creamy, exactly as pasta should be.

So please do give Bottelino’s in Bath a go, not for my sake, but for your own. I promise it will change your entire life and make you a nicer, kinder, funnier and better-looking person. Not that you need it, of course.