Who better to explain what a Trattoria is then Andreas Bonifacio, the Chef Patron of one Hua Hin’s newest eating establishments – Trattoria by Andreas. For the last five years, Andreas has been at the helm of the highly acclaimed Andreas Italian Restaurant & Grill, but that chapter of his life has finished.

Trattoria by Andreas is his focus now, and as he describes it, Trattoria’s are family-run, relaxed, and often cosy eateries, typically serving food of the region they are located. For this restaurant, Andreas is presenting food from his home region of Friuli Venezia Giulia in north-eastern Italy, and more broadly, quality Italian cuisine.

Unlike more formal ristorante, you can just drop in for a Pizza, washed down by a refreshing drink at a Trattoria, or linger with family and friends for a more expansive food journey. The menu at Trattoria by Andreas offers around ten choices each for Starters, Pasta, Mains, and Pizza. Of course, there are some classic desserts and a comprehensive wine list starting with very reasonably priced bottles to that something special.

Our food journey begins with Assortimento di Antipasti Trattoria. A mixed Starter selection including melt in your mouth Italian cold cuts, tomato and burrata salad, and a plump Arancini filled with saffron flavoured rice and a centre of melting gooey cheese. The selection of fresh breads served to the table added to our tasting. This mixed Antipasti plate would be an excellent choice for two or three people to share.

The pasta menu introduced us to a couple of new tastes in the dish Cavatelli Fatti in Casa Con Anduja, Vongole e Zucchini. Eggless homemade Cavatelli pasta with clams and zucchini in a creamy sauce flavoured by a spicy salami paste called Anduja. The gentle heat this Calabrese Salame brought to the dish was a pleasing surprise. The mouth-sized pieces of fried eggplant in the Rigatoni al pesto alla Siciliana e Melanzane provided a tasty counter to the herbaceous pesto of basil, tomato, and almonds. The delicious pillowy pork-filled Tortellini with cream and ham (Tortellini di Carne alla Panna e Prosciutto) rounded out our Pasta journey.

Mains range from quality Australian Black Angus beef dishes, classic Veal Ossobuco, wild-caught sea bass filets, organic Tasmanian salmon, Norwegian cod, and a risotto with porcini mushrooms. On Andreas suggestion, we tried the Korobuta pork chop. A new breed developed in Thailand and originating from the Black Berkshire pig strain. This premium quality pork is produced in the style of Japanese Kurobuta. The juicy chop straight from the grill was served simply with roasted turned vegetables. This was pork excellence.

For the sweet tooth, there were four options, including Panna Cotta with a raspberry sauce, Apple and Almond Tart with vanilla sauce, and a Home Baked Cheesecake. All very tempting though we had to have the Traditional Italian Tiramisu. Soft sponge, espresso dipped ladyfingers, in layers with creamy mascarpone and a generous dusting of cocoa. An excellent way to finish the meal.

People who frequented Andreas Italian Restaurant & Grill would know that he offered special dishes when premium delicacies came into season. White asparagus, or new season truffle for example, or perhaps some fresh Phuket lobsters. Andreas assured us, his Trattoria will continue this practice, so check what Specials might be available. Additionally, if looking to organise a celebration, check with the restaurant to see what can be arranged.

The restaurant offers, in essence, three seating areas. An extended covered open-air front deck where you can watch the Pizza come and go from the wood-fired oven. A ground floor airconditioned room, or ascend the creaking stairs to a larger airconditioned dining area with views over the front deck. Décor is relaxed, with warm tones, and some funky European art adding brightness and colour to the walls.

Situated on the main Nong Kae-Takiab Road between Cicada and Tamarind Markets with on-street parking. Open for lunch 12 to 2:00 pm and dinner 5:00 to 11:00 pm seven days a week. Reservations for dinner and weekend lunches are always recommended and can be made by calling +66(0)969950242, emailing ab@andreas-ristorante.com,
or via their website: www.trattoria-huahin.com.

Hua Hin now has a relaxed and cosy family-run Trattoria serving quality genuine Italian cuisine at comfortable prices. A welcome addition to Hua Hin’s dining scene, and as Andreas explains, “It’s an evolving story, so make sure you come back often.”

By Michael Cullen

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