During a weekend excursion to Victoria to visit the Royal BC Museum and the ancient Mayan exhibit, we stopped for dinner at a downtown italian-american restaurant called Pagliacci’s.
While the menu is covers steak, seafood, pasta and salads, Pagliacci’s is best known for their pasta dishes.
We started with an appetizer of Minnesota Fats (arancini)
This is a trio of risotto rice balls, stuffed with mozzarella, rolled in panko, and deep fried to a light crisp. It’s served over arugula, with a generous dish of marinara sauce.
The risotto balls were hot and crisp on the outside, but tender and gooey on the inside from the mozzarella. It was property seasoned, and delicious. The marinara sauce was spicy and tangy
“Pags” is also known for their focaccia.
This is classic yeasted bread baked in a flat pan, brushed with olive oil and sprinkled with seasalt. The bread was very tender and pillowy, with just a light crust on the outside. This was really good bread, although I would prefer a little more “crusty”-ness on the outside.
My dinner companion ordered the Mr. Roberts seafood lasagne with rose sauce.
This lasagna is stuffed with dungeness crab, rock crab, spinach, shrimp, ricotta, and topped with mozzarella and a rose sauce (the rose sauce was by request, normally, it’s a marinara sauce). The pasta was tender and the seafood filling was lucious and well seasoned. The rose sauce was a nice touch, since it mellowed out the acidity of the tomatoes.
La Strada fettuccine bolognese
This is a slow simmered beef bolognese sauce with tomatoes, herbs, and parmesan cheese, served with fettucini noodles, and finished with olive oil. The meat sauce was chunky and meaty, with lots of herbs and seasonings. The sauce had a strong oregano flavor, it was overshadowing the other flavors in the sauce. The but fettuccine were al dente and the portion was huge. This was a regular sized order (there’s a large size available as well), and this was too much for me to finish. We took some back to the hotel.
“Pags” has a very tight compact dining room and the restaurant was very busy (there were people waiting at the door). The walls filled with old photos, and autographed photos from showbiz personalities. The lighting was kinda dim.
Our server was very pleasant and enthusiastic.