Recently after a friend’s daughter’s first communion, we headed to The Olive Press Italian Restaurant for a celebratory lunch. I was already excited because after all, it’s Italian food! And seeing as we pride ourselves as foodies here at TNL, I couldn’t wait to try out a new restaurant.
As we walked into the restaurant, there is an almost authentic feeling that tends to accompany an Italian restaurant. You could tell by the layout and decor that they were trying to give the feel of being in a restaurant in Italy. You know the feeling I’m talking about – just think of any Italian restaurant you’d ever been to. I appreciated how spacious it was (it was huge actually, with two sides for dining), with a big kitchen just as you pass the host/hostess station. Just as important to mention are the very clean washrooms, labeled “Uomini” (Men) and “Donne” (Ladies). The walls were decorated with pictures from places in Italy and faux frames lined with wine bottles.
The staff was great. There was someone at the host/hostess station ready to greet us and lead us to our reserved table. The waitress was ever patient, considering how long it took for the entire group to get settled. With every time we apologized for being disorganized, she seemed genuinely understanding. She remembered all requests and gave honest opinions when the undecided asked her for comparisons.
You can’t go wrong with some freshly baked bread dipped in olive oil mixed with balsamic vinaigrette. I may have overdone it a bit, but it was SO good. Like. So. Good.
Although there was a group of us, I only noted what I and my friend Mel had ordered; especially since a couple of others had ordered the same thing we did anyway, except for one or two.
I ordered the Balsamic Chicken (fresh chicken breast roasted in-house marinade and smothered in their signature balsamic cream sauce) which was served with garlic roast potatoes and vegetables.
Mel ordered the Roasted Salmon with Lemon Caper Sauce (Roasted in lemon, garlic, herbs and extra virgin olive oil) and also served with garlic roast potatoes and vegetables.
The food was very tasty – like very. I liked the chicken as it was well seasoned (and cooked just right so it wasn’t dry), as were the potatoes. I loved the flavour although for some at the table it was actually a little too seasoned with spices and peppers; it should be noted that they were both pregnant so that could have had something to do with it. Mel liked the salmon but liked the garlic roasted potatoes more; she couldn’t finish her meal because she found it all to be too much (spicy). She thought it would have been just as enjoyable had they not added that many spices. I’d have to agree that it was a bit heavy on the spice, but to me that just made the food even tastier. I had zero problems finishing my meal. My empty plate was a testament to that!
We didn’t order dessert because my friend brought a cake (not to mention we were pretty stuffed from our meals), but they looked too yummy to not take a pic.
The items were priced comparable to a fine dining Italian restaurant (as compared to for eg East Side Mario’s) but considering the service and size of portions they weren’t unreasonably priced (both our meals were $18.95). What really stood out for us, was that after Mel advised the waitress that she couldn’t finish her meal because of the spices, she removed the item from the bill. How very considerate!
Overall I liked my experience at the restaurant and wouldn’t refuse going again. However seeing as it is located far from home I may not be going again anytime soon, but that is just an issue with proximity and not my impression. Oh trust me; I’d be there again in a heartbeat because I love me some good Italian food!
The Olive Press is located at 2322 Dundas Street West, Oakville 905 827 4241. They also do take out if you are not interested in dining in.