An endearing way to talk about an Italian restaurant or a pizza place is by calling it a ‘little piece of Italy’. INO (for Italian, Natural, and Organic) is something more; a comfortable place, classy yet not so elegant, where you’ll find dishes that make you feel as if you’re in Italy. Their quality selection of ingredients and their persistence to culinary perfection are the keys to their cuisine.
The menu has eight salads, piattinos, and pastas. If you think that a salad is not enough for you hunger, then you should try the Supersalad (S/ 24), a fresh bowl of cereals, lentils, broccoli, avocado, radish, spinach, peas and tomato. Eating this salad is great way to be healthier and vegetarian, while skipping the lettuce.
Piattinos like the carpaccio (S/ 32), is a entre of salmon or tenderloin, with capers and cherry tomato, which is dressed with a sweet balsamic reduction, mayonnaise and olive oil. The burrata caprese with arugula leaves (S/ 30) is also a surprising and delightful dish which is served with delightful homemade toats. But the specialty of this restaurant might be the Polpette (S/ 20), very soft veal meatballs topped with a spicy sauce (called arrabbiata), which is served in a little pot to keep it warm.
From Monday to Friday you will find a Peruvian plate of the day (such as lentils with multigrain rice and Italian sausage, or stew with rice and mashed potatoes) and the INO menu including a pasta entree. They use Ferrara pasta, short, long or gnocchi and have five sauces: Bolognese, Funghi (an assortment of mushrooms that are braised with red wine, thyme, garlic, cream, and leek), Pesto, Pomodoro (San Marzano tomato cooked with basil, garlic, and olive oil) and Quattro Formaggi ( four cheeses: fontal, cream, parmesan and gorgonzola) with fresh spinach.
If you don’t know which of these sauces is best, don’t be afraid to ask for recommendations from your server, or from the owner, Michele Colle, who is usually around. The specials are out of this world. We tried the Braised Ossobuco (S/ 38), which had an extraordinarily soft texture, and was very well complemented by the gnocchi with cream. Our verdict: totally addictive. For vegetarians, INO has a Parmigiana (S/ 30), a Sicilian recipe made with eggplant and tomato sauce. You can also ask for the soup of the day (tomato cream o Minestrone).
If you come in the morning, the breakfast has healthy and appetizing options. There are fruit salad, eggs Benedictine and free-range eggs with vegetables in tomato sauce, which is served with a homemade toast. If you are here at night, between Tuesdays and Saturdays, they prepare pizzas with their own dough. We tried the burrata, arugula, pesto, and cherry tomato pizza. This surprising variety is served without tomato, and is made with fungi sauce and sausage.
The drinks menu is short but has a very good selection. For juices, we recommend the combination of apple, banana, and strawberry. The restaurant also serves wine (Malbec, Chardonnay or Quianti, served either cold or warm), or coffee (try to espresso for an authentic Italian experience). The most surprising drink is the Sambuca, an Italian anise-flavoured that they served as a digestive, which is mixed with coffee grounds. Finally, the dessert selection is limited, but they all taste wonderful, especially the brownie and the carrot cake.
We are not sure that you could find a little Italy inside of INO, but we are sure that you will love the heaters and blankets on the terrace, the second floor for events (table for 70 people) and their attention to detail and perfection. Having been open for four years, they are experienced at serving delicious Italian cuisine.
INO Deli Gourmet
Burgos 310, San Isidro
Sunday and Monday, 9.00 – 18.00
Tuesday and Wednesday, 9.00 – 22.00
Thursday to Saturday, 9.00 – 23.00
Salads: S/ 24 – S/ 26
Piattino: S/ 18 – S/ 35
Pastas: S/ 25
Specials: S/ 30 – S/ 38
Breakfast: S/ 18 – S/ 24
Pizzas: S/ 30 – S/ 40
Bonus: Pet-friendly and they sell many products such as pasta, cheeses, sausages, and the meats vacuum sealed.
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