Cibo Italiano is the offspring of a neighbourhood Italian grocery store and diner. No frills here, the compact space sees stacks of Italian beers and wines for sale, in addition to Italian imports like cheeses, cold cuts, oils and pastas.
An antipasti bar and the high tables spilling out onto the pavement are signs that meals are served and that it isn’t just a place for takeaway.
It was a Saturday night and walking in, the regulars gave us a onceover – probably assessing whether we were just stragglers who had wandered over or if we were new neighbours of theirs.
But don’t get me wrong. The vibe is friendly and super casual and even the bottle shop owner next door opens shop just to let you admire his expansive range of specialty liquor.
Now, you cannot go to Cibo Italiano without having the Burrata (S$23.80). I mean, the equivalent price outside, bearing in mind portion sizes? Probably in the range of $40 or so.
This creamy butterball of a cheese is the equivalent of a lava cake in the world of cheese. Cut into the shell and you should see a melty, oozy curd and cream mixture spilling out. Always best eaten on its own with a dash of salt and a drizzle of olio, it’s one of my favourite cheeses.
For this price, what we got at Cibo Italiano was amazing.
To accompany the glorious burrata, we chose a range of antipasti – you can mix and match 3 options with either lettuce or rucola (rocket) for a hearty salad for just $16.90.
We saw many a pizza go by, but I’m not a huge pizza fan so I selected from the limited fresh pasta range instead.
When it comes to pasta, if I see any kind that I cannot quite make at home – that’s the one that I would go for. And that usually means a ravioli of sorts.
And when you tell me it’s Lobster and Crab filled Ravioli ($20.90), then I’m sold. My friend thought it was too fishy but I thought it was rather resplendent with the taste of the sea. Po-tay-toes, po-tah-toes.
Just when I thought I was stuffed, I had a second wind, digestion probably aided by another glass of vino ($10.90 each), so we indulged in the chocolate cake.
Simple and well-executed, the rich chocolate was a sweet ending to our meal at Cibo Italiano.
Cibo Italiano is the place to go to if you’re looking for a simple, fresh meal in an Italian bar-like atmosphere.
Address: 428 River Valley Rd, Singapore 248327
Contact: +65 6385 1310
Tuesday – Friday: 11.30am-2.30pm, 4.30pm-10.30pm
Saturday & Sunday: 11am-10.30pm