Warm lights greet you at the door, and gently ambient music plays in the background. Retro dining chairs and assortment of printed posters line your sight. And, yes; you’re here for your booking at 6:00 pm.
If you’ve not visited the bustling Main Road of Sea Point in a few months, let me prepare you for the new hot and happening: Ariel Modern Italian has opened its doors as a sister restaurant to Jarryd’s in Regent Road, with an artful interior design that transported me to a place that I have never been before.
Ariel Modern Italian visually combines the robust, industrial chic of New York-style bars, with the simplistic, minimalist style of Napoli eateries. As self-described, their infusion of decoration ensures that contemporary reimagines tradition – also extending to their food, which I’ll touch upon later. From the get-go, the service was warm and friendly. Our waiter had a winning smile whenever he frequented our table (which was often, but I take that as a courtesy). Uncomplicated yet charismatic explanations of the menu, cocktails, and even the dessert options were politely offered. His cocktail recommendations hit the nail on the head – by the way, be sure to Uber after your meal as the Ariel Spritz (if I remember the name correctly; after all, it was strong) will knock your socks off. Perfectly balanced citrus meets gentle tartness in a refreshingly icy cup.
For when we placed our meal orders, it was surprisingly seamless. A noteworthy accomplishment, as our table was of seven young adults that need to pre-prepare their orders in their heads. Within a few sips of our cocktails and exchanges of anecdotes, our food arrived. Now, for a round of applause!
As one does, my friends order the pasta dishes that were as different in ingredients as the pasta shapes differed; perfectly cooked rigatoni, bouncy spaghettini, and long tangles of tagliatelle. My dish was incredibly tangy and tasty chicken limone piccata that was silkily bathing in its acidic sauce – by the way, a springy bundle of rocket next to it, but I just so happened to order the rocket with Parmesan and pine nut salad – a worthy pairing. Visit their menu here just to start getting your food-FOMO ready.
The final verdict – my order was insanely delicious. My salad was enough to split between two people even as a side order, and the chicken was tenderly cooked. If Arial ever bottles and sells that sauce, find me first in line. The pastas were divine, but did need a gingerly sprinkle of salt and black pepper just to fully engage the flavours that were in each of my friends’ plates.
Overall, our experience was definitely worth cherishing. The laughter at the table, the easiness at which conversation flowed, the enthusiasm at which we offered tastes of our cocktails; even the gradual, contented silence that fell over our table within a few bites. I’d say, jolly good job, Ariel Modern Italian.
If you’re looking for the next date night dinner spot or even a sophisticated work function lunch, be sure to book at Ariel. They offer DinePlan booking options, as well as calling ahead from 12h00 onwards.
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