Coach House Hotel
On the main street in Oranmore.
What you get at Paolo Sabatini and Fabiano Mulas’ Basilico Italian Restaurant & Pizzeria is the best of Italian and Irish food delivered with panache and style in their cool restaurant in the old stone building that is also the 16 bedroomed Coach House Hotel . The guys here really got it right when they set up in 2008 for it has become a destination for those who want not only good Italian food but good food in general. There is something for everyone here from friends to families, from cracking great authentic pizzas to whopping great 14oz Athenry T-bone aged steaks.
Paolo and Fabiano are people who understand what good food and sourcing the best of produce is all about. Whilst they focus on the very best of Italian artisan fare such as prosciutto, salume, cheeses, oils, and so on which of course they import, they apply the same stringent buying criteria here in Ireland supporting local producers. Their superb beef and chicken comes from producers in Athenry, whilst their pork and lamb from Roscommon. Their fish comes from the well known Gannet fishmongers in Galway whilst the lettuce for their salads is local organic hand cut and washed in small batches as required. Most of their soups, sauces and dressings are gluten free – which I love. All of their pastries and breads are baked by their own pastry team.
When it comes to Antipasti you are spoiled for choice with goodies. Killary mussels are cooked with garlic, chilli, parsley, white wine in tomato sauce and served with crispy ciabatta toasts. The every popular calamari fritti is there as well as Arnacini Agli Asparagi – homemade Sicilian style rice croquettes filled with green asparagus, lemon, scallion, mint and Parmesan, served with Arrabiata sauce. I love the Insalata del Porto of panfried West Cork monkfish and mussels with chilli, garlic and capers, served with rocket leaves, cherry tomatoes and black olives. Antipasto all’ Italiana is also another favourite of mine being a variety of Italian cured meats served on a wooden board with olives, sundried tomatoes, chicken liver bruschetta, chilli Pecorino and Mozzarella.
Their homemade pastas are to die for from Tagliatelle with roast aubergines, peppers and mushrooms, basil, sundried tomatoes in a light cream sauce to Linguine al Gambero with juice pan fried garlic prawns tweaked with a hit of chilli. A trio of veal uses prime Irish rose veal with a choice of Vitella al Funghi, Vitella al Forno, or Vitella Pisana. Chicken dishes include Pollo al Marsala, Pollo Piccante, Fagottino di Pollo or Pollo Pizzaiola. Steaks are amazing served from the grill. You can have an 12oz or 14 oz 18 day aged steak accompanied by your choice of Cajun cream, Black Pepper, Black Truffle and red wine sauce. They also do delicious beef fillet medallions. I love their sides, try some. They do delicious spaghetti in olive oil with garlic, chilli and parsley; sauté mushrooms; and delicious roasted new potatoes in garlic and rosemary – as well of course as fresh cut chips, boiled new potatoes or mash. They always have wonderful fish dishes which vary daily so check their specials.
Their pizzas are amazing made with a thin 12” pizza crust, you can ask for a classic thick 10” version, but I like the thin base. All of the favourites are there – sixteen of them - from Fiorentina with baby spinach, egg, olives and Parmesan, to Sorrento with Buffalo Mozzarella, basil, cherry tomatoes and Parmesan.
Leave room for their homemade puds as well for we all love a good Tiramisu and all of those other traditional Italian puds oozing with everything that is good for us. Yum.
A real taste of Italy in beautiful Oranmore.