From the age of 4 to approximately 11, I pretty much only ate one thing when my family went out to eat: plain spaghetti. No tomato sauce, no shaky cheese, certainly no parsley (I once made my hapless parents pick it off each strand of pasta before deigning to dig in). I eventually outgrew my food pickiness peccadillo (how could I live in Singapore if I hadn’t?!), but the point is this: I know that kids love their pasta (and pizza), and I know when I’m having great pasta!
A few weeks ago I visited the newly-opened, super family-friendly 2it&drink over in River Valley. First of all, it’s pronounced “To eat and drink” (IT being the two-letter abbreviation for Italy, and “Eat” being how it’s pronounced in Italian). Despite its casual vibe, sizable kids menu and affordable prices (most dishes are $15-$20; kid prices are $4-$10), the resto’s got quite the fancy pedigree: it’s Italian-owned and comes from the team behind venerable Italian fine diners OTTO Ristorante and Otto Locanda.
Located at street level at the front of Valley Point Shopping Centre, 2it&drink has its very own “Pasta lab” where pasta and pizza dough are made fresh daily. Kiddos will also love sitting at the pizza bar, where they can watch the resident pizzaioli bake pies in the gas oven using olive wood chips.
We tried two pizzas during our meal and the crust was impeccable; I often find crust here tastes like cardboard, but this was fresh, tasty, and had that perfect combination of crispy-on-the-outside-doughy-on-the-inside. Just look at that ever-so-slightly charred bubble in the photo at the top; my stomach is rumbling just thinking about it! The toppings – including juicy olives and super-colourful fresh veggies – were both delicious and a feast for the eyes.
The restaurant’s extensive menu of dishes are perfect for sharing: our group of four started off with some delightfully light and crispy calamari, along with some fantastic Melanzane Alla Parmigiana (eggplant parm in my part of the world), which stood out to me as the star in a meal full of yummy dishes.
Next we moved on to the famous pasta, which certainly lived up to the hype. The fettucine in the Fettucine Al Frutti Di Mare was springy but not sticky, wrapping easily around my fork for one delicious bite after another. The dish had a generous heaping of clams and prawns, too!
Equally delish was the Agnolotti Di Brasato Al Funghi, although creamy, mushroomy dishes are a bit on the heavy side for me. I can’t fault the pasta, though! I love how it was so fresh you could almost taste a slight hint of the egg used to make it. YUM!
As if I needed to stuff myself more, we capped our meal off with two chocolate-themed desserts (I’m physically incapable of turning down chocolate, no matter how full I am). The Terrina Di Cioccolato was both rich and smooth, while eating the Tiramisu Nocciola was like digging into a little bowl of wonder. Not at all soggy, yet spiked with just a touch of alcohol to give it a nice zing, I could have easily polished off two or three more bowls on my own.
With its slightly funky décor, paper placemats and stacks of highchairs at the ready, 2it&drink is an ideal place for families. Yet between its super-tasty food and its impressive wine and beer lists, it can easily please parents and even double as a relaxed date night spot. I will definitely add it to my River Valley hit list.
2it&drink, Valley Point Shopping Centre, 491 River Valley Road #01-01, Singapore 248371, Tel: (+65) 6737 3001
Opening hours: Mon – Fri: 12-2pm; 6-10pm. Weekends & PH: 12-3pm; 5:30-10pm.