Now and again, I decide to eat out in places a little further afield than our wonderful city. For this occasion, I was on my way to Sorella Sorella (Sister Sister), a family owned Italian restaurant based in Sunniside.
According to their website,
At Sorella Sorella you’ll be surrounded by unique vintage Italian-inspired decor with a modern twist. Our restaurant is welcoming and relaxed and makes the perfect place to enjoy food & drinks with friends & family. We are proud of our independence & passionate about our food & service.
First and foremost, there are many Italian restaurants knocking about in our region nowadays. So was Sorella Sorella going to be as unique as it makes out? Were they going to make the trip to Sunniside worthwhile?
Sorella Sorella is an enormous setting; I was amazed by its size. Although it was a Friday night, I was also impressed at the amount of cars parked outside (maybe not as much if we hadn’t got the final space). Inside the restaurant, each table in sight was taken with families, couples and revellers making up the buoyant ambience. Sat at our table for two, we were also ready to get involved.
In terms of drinks available, Sorella Sorella pretty much has everything you could need. Their wine menu is particularly informative as it maps the wines they serve by origin. I particularly liked how they do a 500ml carafe option of wine, which to me, reminds me of sunny holidays I’ve had in the past. We chose Montepulciano d’Abruzzo DOP, Treviso, Veneto at £13.80 a carafe which was the priciest of the carafes available. This medium bodied, bold and brisk red was a perfect start to get us in the mood.
Usually, I go to Italian restaurants without much choice or hope of gluten free dining. But I’m going to let you into a little secret. Sorella Sorella is different. Sorella Sorella is unique. Sorrella Sorella have their own Gluten Free Menu! Excited much! In fact they have their own Vegan and Dairy Free Menus too! Better still, they’re all quality. My gut was already grinning but at the same time it was also beginning to sing whilst I was winning – hunger had stroke.
So, for our starters to share, we decided on Mussels Aglio – Steamed mussels in pancetta, tarragon, white wine and garlic sauce at £6.95 and a 12 inch Gluten Free Garlic Bread Tomato at £5.25. Considering the place was rammed, the speedy service was sublime. Although we didn’t have a particular host, all of the waiters and waitresses were pleasant and couldn’t do enough for us all evening. The mussels were quite simply outstanding. The creamy sauce, along with the salty chew of the pancetta, enhanced the mussels and I’d go as far as saying the best I’ve ever had. The gluten free thin garlic bread layered with tomato and basil was excellent too. I mean, I don’t get to eat it that often as it is so hard to find (even in Italy) so I made the most of it. Molto bene! If you’re coeliac, the gluten free garlic bread is worth the trip alone.
For our mains, I had Pollo al Pepe – Chicken breast with peppercorn sauce, served with spinach, garlic and rosemary potatoes at £12.55 and my colleague opted for Fettuccine Salmon at £9.95 – Smoked salmon, spinach, lemon, garlic cream cheese and parsley. Swamped in a thick, golden peppercorn sauce, the centred juicy chicken breast was guarded by crispy, bronzed roast potatoes and sautéed spinach which added further colour to the dish. My colleague’s pasta dish was certainly substantial; his reaction told the whole story, I remember this vividly. It wasn’t something he’d usually go for but he was pleased with his choice. Although the garlic cream cheese was a tad too rich for his palette, he gave it as good as he got but he couldn’t manage it all. It was a big thumbs up on the mains.
At this point, I was feeling defeated too. However, when gluten free desserts are on the menu, there was absolutely no chance I was going to leave without some sweet indulgence. My choice was simple, Chocolate Orange Truffles, Chocolate Crunch, Candied Orange Zest at £5.95. Well, with my eyes bigger than my stomach, it looked as cute as it interpreted. Each of the trio of smooth truffle balls gently seduced my palette one by one. Then the chocolate crunch would entice you in even more. It was one of the best gluten free desserts as a dish I’ve tasted. Amore Sorrella Sorrella. My colleague’s Chocolate and Hazelnut Cheesecake, Candied Hazelnuts and Nutella Chocolate dessert at £5.95 was in his words ‘Dreamy’. A moist slab of cheesecake covered in thick chocolate; it was easily one of the most decadent desserts we’ve had this year, it just screamed eat me!
It turned out to be a more than worthwhile evening at Sorella Sorella; it certainly is more than your run of the mill Italian as we felt like we were in Italy… Thank you to all of the staff for making us feel that.