Thursday, October 16, 2014
Bluefield Edition: Portabella Italian Restaurant
I traveled to McDowell County recently, and as I was exiting town, I was hoping to stop at Ya'Sou's Restaurant. Unfortunately, I found them closed. I made my way back to Bluefield to hit the interstate and head back north. But, stomach was rumbling and I needed dinner. So. Guess who I saw in Bluefield? Remember that guy?
The infamous Chris Slater. We went to a new restaurant in Bluefield called Portabella Italian Restaurant. We parked along the side, then I was asked to move so a gentleman could cut the grass, and then I parked again, and then we finally went inside.
It's pretty basic inside, though there is pretty stained glass above the door emblazoned with the restaurant's name. Our waitress was friendly. We first put in an appetizer of their "Italian Nachos," because it sounds interesting: deep-fried nachos, alfredo sauce, chicken, green peppers, jalapenos, and mozzarella cheese.
Even though Chris has a newfound vegetarian calling, I think he may have had a piece of chicken or two. Whoops. So the cool thing about this was the chips are actually fried, and the sauce was pretty tasty. But it got soggy way fast. You know how quickly regular nachos do? And they're not really covered in a sauce like this. I dig the creative spin on the appetizer, though, but not sure I'd go after it again.
My house salad was impressing, boasting fresh tomatoes, green peppers, onion, carrots, banana peppers, croutons, cucumbers and fresh mozzarella cheese. Definitely on the better end of regular house salads. Too bad it automatically comes with ranch. I was hoping for a house Italian dressing.
Some garlic bread was brought to us. A little small, but not terribly for complimentary.
Our wait for the main dishes was a little long. For my entree, I ordered their stuffed shells with meatballs in a pink sauce. Three small-ish stuffed shells, but they were each brimming with cheese. Meatballs were OK. I was a fan of the sauce - a nice mix between their alfredo and red.
Chris's calzone looked bangin'. Lots of cheese and a nice golden brown. Not bad, either.
So, Portabella is a no-frills Italian place. I'm always happy to see more local restaurants in an otherwise chain-heavy town. Food was above average. Nothing over-the-top or super amazing, but a decent meal. Service not totally polished, but friendly. Seems like a nice addition to the town.