Luna Caprese is a gem on the elegant North Parade. It's not much to look at on the outside, but once through the door you are transported to an ... More
Luna Caprese is a gem on the elegant North Parade. It's not much to look at on the outside, but once through the door you are transported to an Italian fishing village where gentlemanly mafiosi wait on tables. The only downside is that the decor is slightly tacky, with grotesque angling gear stuck to the walls. That said however, the atmosphere is second to none, the service is extremely helpful, and the choice of either open tables or closed booths is a nice touch. The food here is a real treat: the pâte starter is enough to ruin your appetite alone, but save space for the meat courses that come dripping with the most delightful sauces. The vegetable side dishes are done to a turn and the portions are generous.
Luna Caprese is almost an institution in Oxford, but it has remained stuck in a time warp of its own, from décor to food. There are far too many dishes in the menu and there is a strong suspicion that many of the heavy sauces consist of a single base with few added ingredients, a-la-curry-house, rather than genuine Italian cooking. If Luna Caprese returned to its roots of simplicity and freshness of ingredients which are key features of Italian cuisine, this restaurant could be a winner, but for now I'd go more for a trip down memory lane, than for memorable food.
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