5732 Melrose Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90038
Fri, 01/23/2015, 8:00pm reservation
Osteria Mamma was bustling on a Friday evening. People were waiting outside for a table. The receptionist was phoning me if I would still be making my reservation just as I was walking in the door at 8:00pm on the dot. It is either a frequent occurrence at this Italian eatery or it is DineLA restaurant week. I'd bet on the latter.
The restaurant is home to Mamma Loredana. The chef and her family deliver cuisine from the Veneto region of Italy. Pizzas and pastas compose the bulk of the menu. Tables are stationed in close proximity to each other. The bar reveals a panel of their wine collection. Walls are painted yellow to forge a sense of vibrancy to the room, but the scope of the restaurant was anything but vibrant or interesting.
Crostini di Burrata ($17.25): Burrata cheese crostini with black truffles and prosciutto. You would assume a creamy, salty cheese laced with black truffles and prosciutto would be unbelievable. It quite possibly could be, but for some reason, this dish was bland without fail. I can't decipher whether it was under seasoned or just very ill constructed.
Pizza Berto ($14.95): Mozzarella, tomato sauce, spicy pepperoni, sausage. Cardboard pizza. Need I say more?
Linguine alle Vongole ($17.95): White wine clam sauce. This dish was satisfactory but nothing to be put in the category of being amazing. The only positive piece of the dish was the fact that they did not skimp on the clams.
Battuta Fiorentina ($16.25): Pounded and grilled Jidori chicken served with green beans. The chicken was moist and seasoned well. The green beans were respectable to accompany the chicken. Honestly, can chicken and green beans put onto a plate like the one below be memorable? Well, most likely but not in a good way. Definitely nothing special and can be a dish attempted at home.
Tiramisu: My favorite dish. The tiramisu was light and creamy. The lady fingers were not overly doused in espresso, which I appreciated. The mascarpone was fluffy and the cocoa powder was icing on the cake (literally). This was presumably the only dish that I actually enjoyed from the restaurant.
Overall, Osteria Mamma failed to persuade me to fall in love with her dishes. The restaurant seems to be very popular, regardless of her dishes being somewhat bland. When I think of Italian food, I want something that will satisfy my every pasta, pizza, gelato, cheese cravings, and this restaurant just didn't do it for me. Tip: The tiramisu is worth a consideration.
Notable dishes: Tiramisu