Opened during the height of the Covid-19 pandemic and Movement Control Order in October 2020, Natalina Italian Kitchen in Avenue K has proven itself as a delicious dining spot among locals for real and authentic Italian cuisines in Kuala Lumpur.
As seen through their long reservation list where it’s recommended to make a reservation at least one week in advance, locals have been thronging Natalina in droves once dining in was allowed, even until now.
A small yet cosy restaurant located on the third floor of Avenue K in the middle of Kuala Lumpur, guests will be greeted by pictures of Frank Sinatra’s mother, Natalina, hanging on the brick wall, a homage and inspiration to the restaurant’s name.
The Chef Behind Natalina
There’s a reason why Natalina Italian Kitchen is known among the locals as an authentic spot for Italian cuisine, it’s all thanks to Chef Diego Reali and his team.
Chef Diego Reali is the Group Executive Chef at Cinnamon Group for European cuisines and also helms the kitchen at Natalina, however, he will be passing the baton to the new Head Chef, Chef Stefano who is also from Italy.
Chef Diego is no stranger to Southeast Asia and even considers Kuala Lumpur as his second home. He is a third-generation chef from Rome, and the former executive chef of the renowned Italian Restaurant Vineria during his previous stint in Kuala Lumpur and has worked throughout Europe and Asia.
To be authentic as possible, Chef Diego’s menu is inspired by his mother, Ms Stefania Cristofari together with traditions and original flavours influenced by Rome with innovative touches.
Ms Stefania is the owner/head chef of Hosteria Amedeo based in Rome opened by her grandfather in 1958 almost seven decades ago! Originally an Italian osteria it transformed into a full-fledged restaurant based on her and her own mother’s traditional Roman recipes.
The Food At Natalina
A meal at Natalina begins with their signature freshly made bread which is deliciously paired with their special house-made pesto, tomato and olive-based condiments.
After that, diners get to choose from their vast array of Italian cuisine which might not be too familiar to Malaysians as most of the time, Italian food here is modified to fit our tastebuds.
One of the highlights of the menu which will be a delight, especially for meat lovers is the Josper Grill Charcoal Oven – Filleto Di Manzo, a Black Angus tenderloin dish served with truffled chickpea purée, portobello mushroom confit and grilled radicchio.
Furthermore, if you’re a bit adventurous, you can try the Cappelini D Angelo Ai Gamberi, a squid ink angel hair pasta dish with the Josper-grilled king prawn, served with tuna bottarga.
When you come in as well, you won’t miss the big oven at the side which is used for cooking their delicious pizza, hence why not try the classic Margherita pizza which is with freshly made tomato sauce and mozzarella.
If you’re looking to end the night with some alcohol, you can head over to Frank’s Bar which is hidden behind a door at Natalina Italian Kitchen, where many might mistake it for the restroom.
Natalina Italian Kitchen and Frank’s Bar is part of the Cinnamon Group, which owns a diverse lineup of premium restaurants and bars defined by their authentic offerings, including Kikubari in DC Mall, Aliyaa, Nadodi, and many more.
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