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Review: Old faithful Bella Casa Trattoria in Westdene, Bloemfontein

Inside Bella Casa

Inside Bella Casa Trattoria. Photograph courtesy of the restaurant

Fans come back again and again for this cosy Westdene gem’s pizzas and steaks. Eat Out critic Colette du Plessis visits Bella Casa, a neighbourhood trattoria in the City of Roses, for a closer look.

Food

Although Bella Casa is known for its fantastic pizzas, especially the famous Kitchen Sink with spinach, bacon, feta, olives and peppadew, the kitchen also turns out really good meat dishes. (By the way, fresh garlic is available, but you have to ask for it.) We tried the blackboard favourite on our visit, and were not disappointed: the pork chops on mash with a cream, mushroom, apple and sweet mustard sauce is delicious. And yes, it does come with crispy crackling on the side. Judging by the happy looks of the customers who’ve ordered it, the oxtail on a creamy bed of mash also seems to be quite a treat. You might also consider ordering their pièce de résistance, the Black Beast, which is a succulent fillet steak sautéed in lemon butter, black pepper and flambéed in brandy. Yum! The dessert of pears in red wine is absolutely delicious and the perfect way to finish a good meal.

Bella Casa caesar salad

Caesar salad at Bella Casa Trattoria. Photograph courtesy of the restaurant

Drinks

You’re sure to find your drink of choice at Bella Casa, as they cover quite a lot on the liquid side. It’s great that they have taken the trouble to pair each item on the menu with a wine (a lot of them sold by the glass, too). They also do festive sangria in summer and a wonderful Aperol spritz throughout the year – as they should with a name like Bella Casa. They also score points for stocking beer from the local craft brewery, Kaya.

Service

Everything is rather informal at this popular trattoria, which makes it sort of okay to wait a little bit longer than the accepted standard time for your food. The waiters are very friendly, however, and seem knowledgeable about the menu.

Italian posters inside Bella Casa

Keeping to the Italian theme inside Bella Casa Trattoria. Photograph courtesy of the restaurant

Ambience

Bella Casa looks like a small restaurant from the outside, but is actually much bigger once you step inside the old building. The atmosphere is very relaxed and homely, which explains why diners return again and again.

And…

This owner-run restaurant is often fully booked. It is recommended that you phone early to book your table outside, especially during Bloem’s long and magical summer months, or close to the fire during the winter.

Are you one of the regulars at Bella Casa Trattoria? Let us know why you love it so much by writing a review, and we’ll pledge a meal for a hungry child through Stop Hunger Now SA.

Eat Out critics dine anonymously and pay for their meals in full. Read our editorial policy here.

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