Warsaw Local visited San Lorenzo, aleja Jana Pawła II 36, Warszawa on 13th February, 2016.
San Lorenzo is well known in Warsaw for always have Italian speaking members of staff available, and after learning the owners were from Italy, we knew they would be serious about their food. From the outside, we were not expecting much, let’s find out if they are serious about their food or not.
Finding the location
In all our reviews we use the Palace of Culture and Science as a point of reference. It was easy to find and took us about 20 minutes. If you know the city already, it is less than 30zl in a taxi, but if you’re new to the city, we recommend the walk as you will pass some great pieces of architecture.
The entrance is easy to spot from far away. The outside of San Lorenzo is large and red.
Prices and Menu
It was great to learn that the menus were available in more than just the standard Polish and English. San Lorenzo provides a FULL menu is Russian and Italian. I was served with standalone English menu, this was not a Polish menu with unreadably small English text under it. It was a full English only menu.
We ordered a starter of Rosemary Focaccia with tuscan olive oil, a pasta dish of Spaghetti with fresh tomatoes and fragrant basil, a meat dish of tagliata (beef fillet mignon served with mixed greens, parmigiana shavings and truffle oil) and a dessert of sfogliatine with crunchy almonds, stuffed with three flavours of chocolate.
Our total bill came to: 130zl
We were honestly blown away by the price! When we first entered, the lobby is covered in expensive champagnes and a wall covered in famous celebrities on the wall, I had to double check I had my credit card with the biggest amount on it….but it was not needed! We can 100% guarantee that you will not find such an elegant location, at such reasonable pricing within walking distance. Ten out of ten for pricing.
Our Personal Experience
Quality of food and Waiting time
We visited San Lorenzo mid afternoon, so the venue had lots of seating available. We were seated instantly, and we were given a nice window seat.
We placed our starter order of Rosemary Focaccia with tuscan olive oil, and it took about five minutes.
It was very nicely presented, on a thick cloth and with oils. The bread was of amazing quality, a perfect combination of crisp and softness. The rosemary was noticeable, but not overwhelming.
After living in Spain and travelling through Italy, I learnt a few tricks about testing the quality of oil and vinegar, by putting some vinegar in to a pool of oil and seeing if they separate and they didn’t! This shows that San Lorenzo care about every small detail and are passionate by every ingredient.
Both of our mains were served at the same time. My guest was served their pasta dish of Spaghetti with fresh tomatoes and fragrant basil:
It was amazing! The pasta was fresh and light, the tomatoes were warm, but still firm and did not fall apart when pierced with a fork. The dish was also served with a pot of parmesan cheese, this was a nice touch because it allowed my guest to apply their own amount, and throughout the dish when needed. My guest said this is by far the best spaghetti dish they had tried in Warsaw, and they were born in Warsaw!
My ordered of beef fillet mignon served with mixed greens, parmigiana shavings and truffle oil came very nicely presented:
The meat was perfectly cooked! It was as easy to cut as warm butter. It required no force to enjoy. The mixed greens were a very nice complement to the soft meat. The greens with crunchy and springy, full of earthly flavors. A real culinary experience.
I also took a small potion of potatoes with my meat:
They were very light on the stomach and easy to eat.
At first glance, I didn’t think my dish allowed with fill me up, but I felt very satisfied afterwards and my guest said their dish was more than enough for them! I barely had any space left for a dessert, but my guest had recently visited Italy, and they said if they had a certain dish, then we had to get it.
The dessert was on the menu, sfogliatine with crunchy almonds, stuffed with three flavors of chocolate:
These were absolutely fantastic, I was blown away! The rolls were a little difficult to break with a spoon, but with a little pressure they gave way. They were filled with flavorsome creams of what seemed like milk chocolate, dark chocolate and white chocolate. It was an amazing experience and we would fully recommend this dish. When ordering the waitress asked if we’d like to order two desserts, but it is a good job we didn’t. This dish is big enough for two or maybe even three people to share. A must try!
Decor and Atmosphere
From the outside, we were not expecting much. It is impossible to see inside from the outside, but my guest had to pick my jaw of the floor when we entered. It was like stepping in to another world. To the left a classy bar that looked like it wouldn’t look out of place in a 40’s mobster film and to the right was a lobby for leaving your jackets with a lovely member of staff.
Once we taken the curving staircase, we entered what looked like a royal dinning room! It was very impressive. We have never visited such a luxury dinning venue that was so close to the city center. This venue would be perfect for an wedding dinner, anniversary or even a place to ask the marriage question!
The atmosphere was great! With traditional Italian music in the background and the smell of the kitchen, if I had closed my eyes I could have sworn I was in Italy.
All the staff spoke a great level of English. I asked for recommendations, requested some basic history of the building and asked about their job. They were all very confident in telling me the answers with big smiles on their faces.
As the restaurant was not to busy, we were able to speak with the manager, he mentioned he was not to confident in his English, but my guest was Polish so we were able to learn more. A lovely man, who also speaks Italian, after living there for many years. He explained to us that the owner is from Italy and his wife is from Poland, so the perfect mix of local understanding, and food knowledge.
Room for Improvement and things to note
We also like to look for things to improve and we honestly we couldn’t find one thing! The venue is very elegant and classy, the staff were extremely polite and well spoken. The menu pricing was very reasonable and the food quality was better than we could have ever even imagined.
It is important to note, that you should not judge this location from the outside. It is nothing like the others restaurants in the area. It is a real experience that everyone should have in their life.
Overall we have to say this is the best restaurant we have reviewed so far! We recommend this venue for the perfect Saturday date night, graduation dinner or a really impressive first date!
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