Samui Wining & Dining
THE PULL TO PLEASE
Come home to real Italian flavours at Prego.

Come home to real Italian flavours at Prego.Handily located on the beach road in north Chaweng, Prego first opened its doors in 2003, but definitely likes to innovate; the restaurant had a complete makeover recently, and sports a bright, new look. It’s inspired by Italy’s rich cultural heritage, but is a lot more than rustic Italian decor; at Prego’s heart is an abiding passion for authentic cuisine.

          

Authentic Italian flavours are what Prego’s all about. You’ll find them here, faithfully recreated by executive chef, Marco Boscaini. He’s a friendly, approachable figure, and he and his staff will accommodate your every wish. And adding to the appeal of the restaurant, you’ll find that it’s an entirely welcoming place – you’ll definitely feel at home here.

          

On the menu, certain dishes are variously marked as chef’s recommendations, vegetarian dishes and guests’ favourites. But you’ll probably need no guidance as most of the dishes are well-known favourites. Which isn’t to say that the tastes are all run-of-the-mill - they’re not. The food at Prego is filled with flavour and utterly scrumptious. This is thanks to Marco being very careful to get exactly the right ingredients and prepare them in traditional ways. You may well find that your taste buds, even if well used to Italian cuisine, will perk up while enjoying the food at Prego. Everything is authentic, right down to the refurbished pizza oven which Marco uses not only for mouth-watering pizzas, but also for a whole plethora of baked goods.

          

It’s very hard with the excellent menu to single out a few choices. Start with any of the Prego antipasti – there are over a dozen and they’re all exquisite. Be careful not to order too much as portions at the restaurant are definitely on the generous side. P70-2Try the amazing burrata fresco – one enormous portion of fresh burrata cheese along with diced cherry tomatoes in a delicious marinade. Parma ham and melon may be a standby in other restaurants, but at Prego they’re to be savoured as a timeless classic.

          

One of the favourite dishes to try at Prego is their risotto gamberi, a fine rendering of the classic prawn dish thanks to the very fresh ingredients and carnaroli rice from Piedmont – it’s deliciously satisfying and very moreish. Another dish that’s filled with great tastes is the Pici, consisting of hand-rolled pasta, Chianti-flavoured beef ragu and pecorino. If you enjoy meat for a main course, then opt for the costolette di agnello, or oven-baked lamb chops, flavoured herbs, grilled tomato and some of the best ever sautéed spinach. Fish lovers will also find plenty with baked filet of salmon and pan-roasted sea bass and a sumptuous seafood platter.

          

Desserts may come last on the menu, but they’re certainly not the least in Prego’s extensive repertoire. Particularly recommended is the tiramisu – big enough for two people to share – or the delicious affogato with its subtle blend of espresso, amaretto and fior di latte ice-cream.

          

Prego goes many an extra mile to please its guests. For example, if you look at the menu, in the lower right hand corner, you’ll see a rather modest footnote stating, ‘Gluten-free menu and vegan cheeses available’.

          

It’s just a few words but it’s not an idle remark. Marco can make a whole three-course meal in this way – it’s incredibly satisfying for diners with intolerances to be able to find this, and many are surprised to find their options cateredCome home to real Italian flavours at Prego. for so totally and so professionally.

          

Chef Marco is happy to put on all sorts of gatherings including parties, corporate events and of course wedding receptions. It doesn’t matter if your party is small in number or if it consists of scores of people. The restaurant, for a start is very large – it has seating for just under 200 people at any one time. In addition, a second air-con room has just been completed. The two rooms are completely separate and each can accommodate 45 diners. The fact that the rooms are glassed in means that guests can arrange for live entertainment or at the very least, select their own music to be played.

          

Both young and older children are welcome, and you need have no worries about bringing them. The restaurant is much like one back at home in Italy, the type where friends and family like to gather. This is exactly how things should be, according to the management – not stuffy at all, but convivial and relaxed.

          

Prego has been drawing residents and holidaymakers alike with its flair for Italian cuisine, ensuring that diners enjoy a state-of-the-art setting melded with a wonderfully friendly vibe. It’s a perfect place to come and dine in laid-back luxury without breaking the budget.

          

Dimitri Waring


 


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