Henan Zhong Lu's La Gondola grows up on Panyu Lu, with rich, dark green walls and chandeliers glistening overhead.
Our complimentary glass of prosecco set us off for an evening of fine Italian dining as we tucked into the Antipasto appetizer (RMB 120) of Italian cold cuts: prosciutto and salami paired with the essential olives and melon slices. The Endivia salad (RMB 50) came drizzled with a sweet balsamic, a nice prelude to our heavier mains that included a creamy risotto asparagus (RMB 90), the garganelli (penne pasta with chilli flakes and cod, RMB 85), and the Salsiccia pizza (eggplant and sausage, RMB 85). The pasta proved to be satisfying with just the right amount of spiciness, but we wished that the pieces of fish weren't cut up and mixed in–we almost missed them. The pizza was "so big!" and mild in flavor, though the salty sausages flecked it with the saltiness it craved. All rounded up with a ramekin of oozy tiramisu (RMB 50), the meal was enjoyable.
Yet, with prices hiked up a notch but without an obvious improvement in the dishes, we may choose to just head back to La Gondola. Perfect for: a fancy rendition of spaghetti.
Add: 127 Panyu Lu