Marco & Carl Review: We're thrilled a new Halal Italian restaurant has opened in Bradford

Read time: 3 minutes

 Photo courtesy of Marco & Carl

Photo courtesy of Marco & Carl

Halal Status: All meats are HMC Certified, no alcohol served and no non-Halal ingredients used in any dish (oils, alcohol or pork based).
Address: 2a Vicar Lane, Bradford, BD1 5LD

So you're in Bradford ready to get your eat on and you're craving Italian. There are a few choices but you'll have to settle for the fish or vegetarian options because truth be known there aren't many Halal Italian restaurants here.  You'll have to make a choice from a limited selection of dishes and then to further complicate things you have to make sure the dish you choose doesn't have any non Halal ingredients.

Don't worry because a brand new Italian restaurant has hit Bradford specialising in stone baked pizza and pasta dishes. The menu is predominantly Italian based with burgers and steaks thrown in their for good measure. The breakfasts sound really good too, although it's only available over the weekends.

The bread was literally a rolled up pizza...yum!

 Gombero Prawns £8.95

Gombero Prawns £8.95

The starter was definitely on the expensive side so I was expecting to be wowed by the presentation and unfortunately I wasn't. The prawns tasted really fresh and were succulent and soft.  The sauce was piquant and flavoured with a lot of fresh garlic. The sauce had a really good spice kick but I felt the garlic overpowered the other flavours in the dish. For me the best part of the starter was the bread. It was literally a rolled up pizza.  it was crunchy on the outside and gooey in the middle from the cheese. It had a sweet tangy pizza base sauce and a freshness came through from the sweet peppers. Carbgasm!

The main was simple and cooked really well

 Linguine Gamberino £9.90

Linguine Gamberino £9.90

Hands down the main was way better than the starter.  It was garnished with parsley and not being a fan I quickly put it to one side. I loved the rustic look and taste, just how Italian food should be; simple and authentic. But with simple food there's no hiding. The ingredients and flavours have to speak volumes, and boy did they speak volumes; it was like a singing choir.

The pasta was perfectly cooked and had a slight bite not limp or soggy.  It wasn't swimming in sauce either; it just coated the pasta and that's how I feel it should be. I really enjoyed the chunks of tomatoes and sliced  pepper and a background taste of garlic.

Unlike the starter, the flavour of garlic was balanced and didn't overpower the other flavours.  I loved the grated parmesan cheese because when it when it melted it made the sauce creamy. This dish proves that good food doesn't have to be complicated. On the menu it said it was spicy, but I didn't taste any heat. Maybe some dried chilli flakes would've done the trick.

The brownie literally called out 'Eat me!'

 Hot Walnut Fudge Brownie £4.95

Hot Walnut Fudge Brownie £4.95

Oh my days I was blown away by the brownie. I couldn't believe how much chocolate flavour it packed. It was warm and gooey in the middle but it could have done with a bit more time cooking so it wasn't as runny. But I couldn't fault the chocolate taste nor the other textures at work. The edges were slightly chewy, the middle was  gooey and the walnuts were crunchy. This was a texture and taste sensation. The cold vanilla ice cream was deliciously sweet and worked well against the rich taste of chocolate. It cooled everything down and I liked the contrast in temperature. The fresh strawberries cleaned the palette and were refreshing.

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We know you're feeling hungry after reading that review. Download the app on the App Store or the Play Store and get over to Marco & Carl. We can recommend more Halal Italian restaurants in Bradford and beyond for you to enjoy.