In all platters Italian, seek out this fountain of knowledge
In the corner of Sankt Hans Torv lies a little something special. A little place full of character, warmth and charm. One that makes you feel more like an old friend than a just a patron. This of course is Quattro Fontane, the Italian trattoria that lets the food speak for itself.
Since 1993, owner Mario Iarussi has been offering Danes a taste of his home country in a relaxed family atmosphere – a fact we were hard-pressed to disagree with. Quattro Fontane clearly embodied the Italian ‘come one, come all’ charm that we all love. Even on a Tuesday night, there were the regulars in the corner chatting with the waiter and a mother and a son just out for a casual bite to eat.
We began the evening taking in the southern style of Italian cuisine with a seafood antipasto dish.
It was the Carpaccio di salmon dish that really hit the spot with its raw salmon on a bed of seaweed. We also feasted on the Gamberoni all’aglio, a dish made of giant prawns with garlic, white wine and cherry tomatoes. This was an instant hit – the epitome of what simple Italian ingredients mixed in the right way can do.
Don’t make the mistake here though of enjoying the seafood without a glass of the restaurant’s house wine. Yes, you could try a bottle of something a little more upmarket, but the house white was fantastic: a 2012 Avegiano.
Now ever since my first trip to Italy six years ago, I’ve been in love with Italian food. I’ll never forget the first piece of salami I tried there. I distinctly remember taking five minutes just to wrap my head around how it was that a piece of meat could actually taste that good. To this day I’m continually impressed at how the Italians create such simple foods with phenomenal tastes. Which leads me to the main course.
We couldn’t decide between pizza or pasta. Actually we felt it wrong to decide between them, so we had both. Mario (the owner) was more than obliging when it came to making the pasta to our requests, and we went for the ‘Fettuccine ai funghi Porcini’ – fettuccine with Karl Johan mushrooms and cherry tomatoes with a sauce they made slightly creamier for us.
When it came to pizza, we went for a half-half. One side was the Pizza Rucola e Parmigiano – Parma ham, tomato, cheese, rocket salad and parmesan. There’s just something about putting these flavours together on one heck of a thin, light pizza base that’s just divine. The other half was the Pizza Prosciutto e Funghi – cheese, ham, mushroom and tomato. I will add here that they say that a great pizza starts with a great base and that’s exactly what Quattro Fontane does well.
On a side note, one should never enter Quattro Fontane without a great appetite. The food is so good it’s almost a crime not to finish it.
Again we ordered a house red with the mains and were glad we did – let’s be honest though, it’s rare I find an Italian wine that I’m actually disappointed by.
And just when we thought we couldn’t go another round, we just had to try the Tiramisu. It was wonderfully punchy with all the flavours just soaking into one another – the sign of a great tiramisu. Combine this with a great espresso and you’ve got yourself a little slice of Italy.
Don’t wait until a special occasion to visit this little trattoria – Quattro Fontane is a restaurant for the here and now. And if you’re overwhelmed as to what to choose, simply use the phrase “Prendo quello che ha preso lui” – I’ll have what he’s having.
Guldbergsgade 3, Sankt Hans Torv, Cph N; 3539 3931
Open: Mon-Sat 12:00-24:00, Sun 16:00- 24:00
Top Dish: Pizza Rucola e Parmigiano
Price Range: Mains 70-200kr