A wood-burning pizza oven and house-made pasta are the two things you should definitely look for if you want to step up from the usual two for one and big chain variety of pizza and pasta. Cotto Enoteca Pizzeria is one of those places that qualify and they have been on my list to try for a long time.
Located at the east end of Hastings just after Holdom in Burnaby, CEP is just off the beaten path enough that parking and access is easy but so is transit.
We started with Arancini. I feel like I often order this and it turns out to be not available (not here obviously but at other places) possibly because it is usually made with leftover risotto. Here, they had it and it was great!
If you are not familiar with it, you should be. Balls of risotto (leftover is better) with cheese, breaded and deep-fried and served with tomato sauce. Soft and melty on the inside with just a bit of crunch. Very simple but very nice!
The Funghi Pizza had an interesting mixture of mushrooms including portabello and we're not sure what else. It was a meaty mixture that was highlighted by onion jam, goat cheese and mozzarella. The crust was just what you hope for with a bit of char and crunch but also that nice bit of chew. One of the better pizzas that we have had in Metro Vancouver, for sure.
We also tried the Tagliatelle Primavera. There is nothing like house-made pasta and this was very good. Just cooked to the point where there is a little texture (so easy to overcook fresh pasta) that makes pasta more enjoyable. The sauce was simple but rich and they volunteered to grate some fresh parmesan over the top. Who can resist?
With seating inside and a nice covered deck outside, they are ready for year-round service no matter what the current restrictions. CEP has a pleasantly decorated room that kept us entertained and we enjoyed the background soundtrack which included everything from Sam and Dave to Adele without being jarring. The service was very pleasant and the kitchen seemed to be on the ball.
We found the prices to be reasonable enough and can't really find anything not to like! It is worth making a trip here for some decent Italian eats!
Food 4 1/2 out of 5
Comfort 4 1/2 out of 5
Service 4 1/2 out of 5
Value 4 1/2 out of 5
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