Amorosa Pasta House is an Italian eatery in Burnaby that offers a plethora of choices for their patrons. The menu allows for mix and match pasta dishes, choose your own sauce, pasta and fixings.
This. Was. Bizarre. My girlfriend was “allowed” to pick the restaurant on our last day in Vancouver and appropriately searched for the closest one to our hotel. She found two, but which cuisine, Italian or Greek. Which restaurant, Amorosa or Santali? Turns out, it didn’t matter—they’re the same restaurant. And I don’t mean they’re spiritually the same because of shared owners or have matching decors or similar menus. They are literally the same restaurant. Different signs, different entrances, hell even different addresses, all leading to the same building, like budget saving on a movie set. Zomato lists an Amorosa Santali house AND a Santali Souvlaki House. They combined the names on one entry but forgot to delete the other.
I thought this was a joke, like if I pass through the Amorosa door, do they hand me the Italian menu, and the reverse if I enter through the Santali door. Do the accents of the server’s change? Nope, doesn’t matter; they plant you down anywhere and hand you both menus. Why don’t they go for broke, list six different restaurants outside, and turn it all into a food court? Alternatively, maybe just put up a curtain or something. I felt like this was a scene in a sitcom—Jerry Seinfeld must have gotten a few zingers out of this one. I would love it if someone got enraged at the service, stormed out of the restaurant, promising to seek competition, and then re-entered next door back into the same establishment. The idea is funny just thinking about it.
So, after an unnecessary 260 words later, we’ve established Amorosa and Santali are one in the same, meaning the chefs on staff now must commit double duty preparing twice the variety of dishes (and you have to know there are fewer chefs on staff now than when the restaurants were separate). It would be expected that food quality would be compromised as result. And you’d be right. It was an afternoon when we arrived, the only patrons in both restaurants. Since we had previously decided on Italian (my girlfriend select Amorosa), we passed through the appropriate doors and asked for the corresponding menu. On it revealed the customary options seen in every clichéd (see boring) Italian restaurant…as well as every Boston Pizza. One page of the menu is reserved for appetizers, soups, and salads, and the second is all pasta—where you can either pick a premade plate or match a pasta with a sauce and topping. Given that, this one page boasted…running the numbers, 20 + (10 x 5 x [12 x2])…1220 different combinations. (Wait, is that right?)
We both ordered tomato with Italian sausage but with different pastas, her’s rotini while mine gnocchi. The plates arrived quickly, assuring that nothing was made to order. They were also enormous, carrying enough sustenance for that afternoon and for the next meal. Well, I say the next, but in truth, it kept so well in take-away, we were able to enjoy the leftovers a half-week later. I pride myself having a voracious appetite, and even I admit being unable to clean my plate. This was a full pound of starch, not including the fringed garlic bread the size of my forearm. It became clear early on they are supplanting quality with quantity, which, if you follow that formula must mean the food was substandard. I rated it on par if not maybe slightly below Boston Pizza, which I know sounds harsh. The gnocchi was clearly pulled from a factory-processed bag and the parmesan shakers were identical to those found at the aforementioned chain (and I do mean identical).
It wasn’t bad, and a $13 price tag for a plate that immense was astounding. There were no Boston Pizzas nearby, so if stuck in the area, I imagine you could do a lot worse. It’s not an ugly restaurant either—at least it’s not covered floor to ceiling in shades of brown. Just…yellow. The Amoroso half looks better than the Santali half, bringing up the observation discovered later that we had been seated on the wrong half. Santali chairs had no cushions. In the end, all I can say is that Amorosa—er, Santali is suitable for people unwilling to drive five minutes further and find something better. Overall, I’d rather be in Boston Pizza. And I hate Boston Pizza.
Our terrible experience began promptly upon being seated and continued on a steady decline from there on. Our waitress did not acknowledge us for about 10 minutes upon being seated. I felt badly for her as she clearly was run off her feet with too many tables and only her serving our packed section of 8+ tables. There were several bussers/food runners who continually brought food to the wrong tables and looked confused/scattered throughout the evening, leaving the waitress in charge of assisting them, and thus not lightening her load at all. We ordered a Caesar salad and focaccia bread with olive oil and vinegar to start, along with spaghetti Bolognese and fettuccini alfredo for our main dish. The salad and bread arrived within 15-20 minutes but the pasta took OVER an hour. There was no apology or mention of the food wait time by the waitress or staff which was bizarre in itself. We were starving by the time it arrived; thank goodness we had ordered bread to tide us over. I noticed immediately that my fettuccini alfredo smelled strongly of nutmeg and was disappointed to discover it literally tasted like a watery nutmeg sauce, not a creamy alfredo sauce at all. Having made my fair share of alfredo sauce, I am aware that nutmeg is an ingredient, but this is usually consists of a PINCH. In this dish nutmeg appeared to be the main ingredient and it was literally not edible. When a food runner came to take our dishes away she asked if I would like mine packed up and was shocked when I said no thank you as I had only had two bites. She asked why and I told her that I did not like the sauce as it tasted too strongly of nutmeg. She responded offensively stating “you should have told me earlier so we could have remade it,” I was caught off guard with the argumentative stance she took as I was not looking to make a big deal of it and we had already waited over an hour for our food. The last thing I wanted was to wait another hour for a remade dish and this was actually the first time a staff had come by since we had been served. Our bill arrived from yet another staff and there was no sign of our waitress. The pasta dish which I had left untouched was on the bill and no adjustments had been made. The new staff that came to deliver our bill and take our payment even began to brag about how awesome it was that they were SO busy…after we had just spent over an hour waiting for our food which was not even enjoyable. I honestly did not even know what to say, I could not believe the lack of insight or care for their clientele. I will never be going back and warn others not to waste their time either, especially if you’re hungry.
Despite what the description says, Amorosa is a mesh of Italian and Greek. Service can be a little slow but the pasta is consistently good. I have had to take my food home most of the times I come here though, because the portion sizes are quite huge. Even my boyfriend, who is not a light-eater, has taken portions home. I like their polpette and catoccio, but most importantly their make their own pasta section. You can choose up to three different ingredients, pasta, and sauce (pesto costs an extra $2.00 btw).
Had dinner here last night with my wife. It's a nice place and the service was good.
Appetizer - Mussels - Wow, huge portion of mussels in sauce ad it was good 3.5 out of 5 for me.
Entree - Linguine with clams in a tomato sauce - meh, average, 2 out of 5 for me
Dessert - Baklava - it was tasty but it was super hard to cut through, had to use a knife to get through it.
Overall the food was ok-good but the pasta (the main reason I came here) wasn't anything special, average at best so I don't see any reason to return.
Based on the reviews from this site, I decided to give this place a try. Boy was I in for a ride...
Ordered the calamari, pizza bread and linguine with creola sauce. All three disappointing to various degrees. Calamari dip was great but the calamari itself was sub-par - the coating of the calamari was falling off all over the place and reminded me of the calamari served at Knight and Day. Pasta was even worse! The sauce was runny and flavorless, like it was from those No Name pre-made sauces that come in bottles at Superstore. Linguine was undercooked and the shrimp was non-existent. The only good thing about this dish was the italian sausage. Pizza bread was horrible - I suppose it had been sitting out for a while in the back and when it came to us, the cheese had hardened and the toppings (cheese and everything) fell right off. We only finished half of everything and just left the rest and it's the first time we've never taken food to go.
Service started out fine but when we got our bill, we had been charged for a pizza sub rather than pizza bread. When my bf brought this up, the server said we had gotten the pizza sub so we should pay for it. It was our first time here and we didn't know the difference! Why should we pay for the mistake of the server? How is two slices of bread with old toppings supposed to be a sub??!? My bf then said we should only pay for what we ordered so we should only be charged the pizza bread and not the sub, and the server then claimed we were trying to sneak out of paying for the bill! We were so frustrated we paid and just left without arguing further. No point in reasoning with the ignorant I suppose.
Inside was a nice place to sit, felt really home-y. Now, if they could only do something about the food and service... Would never return and will def. spread the word to friends and others to avoid this place at all costs.
Finally went out and tried this pasta restaurant. There appears to be a higher volume take-out clientele here and subsequently in-house customers have to wait. Well, as far as the extent of the wait goes...for a party of two who made reservations we weren't acknowledged at the door for about ten minutes until I approached a waitress.
Then ordered the hot chicken caesar salad which I enjoyed but my company didn't. It's Chinese/Italian fusion and may not be for everyone.
The bread was nothing spectacular here either and not as fresh as other better known pasta restaurants.
The pasta came forty minutes after the order which I found excessive.
Ordered seafood with penne in tomato sauce and it was diluted/runny.
Ordered a seafood cream sauce and it was alright but I've definitely had better.
Service is really nothing special as other walk-in customers would wait and weren't acknowledged for some time. Mind you I went on a Sunday evening and it was steady but not crazy busy as there were tables available.
After finding all the downtown places full, it was off to Burnaby to find Amorosa! I knew this place had good reviews, and I found it was worth the drive.
My wife and I started with the insalata caprese which had great presentation, with a nice vinaigrette to give the cheese and tomato a little flavour. Even the 'small' size was enough for two people. Then we had the garlic bread. I was surprised that bread was extra, but it was well worth the money. It was hot, tender and buttery, with garlic and herbs.
After that I had the creola sauce (sausage, chicken, shrimps in a spicy tomato sauce) on fettuccine pasta, and Mrs. Chasiubow had gamberi zia filomena (garlic cream sauce, bell peppers and prawns) on penne pasta. Both were amazing and our pastas were cooked to a perfect al dente. The sauces were truly outstanding and the portion sizes were epic. I also tried the house red (a Similkameen valley wine) and it was pretty good for 4 bucks!
The servers were very attentive, and the place had the requisite checker table cloths and Italian music, etc. Nice ambience.
I looked up 'Amorosa' in the dictionary: "A wanton woman; a courtesan”. Yep, that's about the best way to describe the experience: A satisfying romp with a passionate Tuscan. I felt a warm afterglow from my meal, and a sense of deep contentment...
It easy to miss this small little pasta house in New West. I started going here about 2 years ago and they never fail to impress. The portions are huge. I ordered the lasagna and packed the leftovers for lunch the next day. Stil had enough to stuff my belly to the max. My boyfriend is real picky about his carbonara, but claims this one to be the best he's had. Look out for their daily specials and if it's your birthday, remember to bring some ID with you as your birthday entree is on the house!
Group of 12 with reservations in our own little room. Restaurant was clean and spacious. Food was quite good as everyone seemed happy and oohs and ahs greeted the pasta dishes as they were served. My only problem was the bread served with dinner. It seemed to be a store bought loaf that had been previously frozen. Cold and almost mushy in the middle. Personally this is the worst bread I have ever been served in a restaurant. Good grief what happened to garlic bread? Don't know how an Italian restaurant could serve this. Pastas dishes were HUGE but not cheap. $15 for a large pasta $12 for a small. There was a little lag in the presentation but just when you are about to downgrade the service another 2 or 3 dishes came out. It took about 7 minutes to served 12 meals. Okay if you are first but sucks when you are last. There is some street parking but there is a lot in the back. Restroom is fine. The food is worth a return visit but the details need to be improved.
My wife and I along with a friend went to this restaurant just this last Sunday evening. Unfortunately we had to wait around 20 minutes, but we were promptly given a table when one was available. My wife ordered the veal with pasta, our friend ordered the Pestore (clams, mushrooms, shrimps and scallops) with cream sauce with gnoochi (pasta) and I ordered the same Pestore in garlic butter in white wine sauce in spinach linguine. The food came out nice and hot. My dish there could have been more seafood as I noticed that the mushrooms were dominant. The flavour was good. My wife and our friend had the same cream sauce for their pasta and I thought it was medicore. The cream was a bit thick and not too much flavour. My wife's veal was okay. All in all the dining experience was positve. We will try other restaurant before we come back.
The food portions are quite large, but its mostly pasta and very little "stuff" in the pasta. Also I found the 3 pasta dishes I tasted from what my party ordered to be all universally bland and not very good.
Service was pretty weak, with the waitress bringing our food and disappearing until it was the end of the meal. Was never asked how the food was, or if i wanted any drinks.
Pretty decent looking inside, it was clean, so no complaints.
Not sure why its so busy here, but i have only been here twice, and both times were poor experiences.
I usually order take out here because it's actually got solid food, great portions and they do seafood pasta quite well. However since our last visit for dine in the service has SERIOUSLY down graded. We arrived and we were seated promptly but after our waitress had taken our orders we rarely saw our waitress, she attended to the table near us fairly well yet we waited over half an hour for our food and I had to leave the table to find staff to ask where our food was. After we ate our shares we again waited.. and waited.. finally I asked another staff member if we could have the food packed up and the bill to our table. The food was packed very quickly but the bill? Well we again waited... until finally we just approached the counter at the front and payed.
Our server also didn't stop by our table once to ask during the meal or our wait if we needed anything or if we were enjoying our meals.
Ambiance.. well the place was freezing and my dad had to wear his jacket.
Now I've worked in the restaurant industry so I'm actually fairly calm, patient and understanding when it comesto anything with getting some food at any establishment and like I said I've never had a problem here before. So I'm not sure if it was just that the waitress was new or not quite up to the task or if its actually just gone down. I'll leave that up to you. We left a tip, obviously a small one but not so small that it was insulting and we decided we wouldn't be back for dine in (ill definately do take out anytime though).
Things are sliding down.
Myself and 2 friends went there a couple weeks back,and,well,quite frankly it was chef boy ar dee quality.
Thin flavorless sauces,overcooked pasta,and tough veal.
2 of us got our orders together,while the third sat for 10 minutes without his salad.Not too impressive.
Very cramped also.
Will not be making any stops at this place anytime soon.
Food - Fantastic selection of pastas. Tasty food, and a decent wine selection. Food portions were great value for the price and very flavourful.
Service - Decent, but not anything to write home about. Drink and food orders were taken promptly.
Ambiance - A pasta house in the middle of nowhere. Location would be better suited for a hardware store. Inside is quaint and intimate.
We had lunch at Amorosa last week on my birthday. So I ordered the cream pasta with chicken and my wife ordered the creola tomato sauce with seafood. My pasta came watery like soup. It's like eating pasta with cream soup...even worst than the Campbell cream of mushroom soup which is still thicker than their pasta sauce. This is probably the worst pasta I've ever had. Their chicken is almost unnoticeable, so I ordered an extra meatball side dish. My wife immediately protested and reminded me that it wasn't good the last time we ordered. But I told her that they must have improved and to give them the benefit of the doubt. The meatball came in and it was so bad...rubbery..and tasteless..except the pasta sauce they sprinkled on top of it. They must have bought those frozen meatballs from Costco or something. Try Anton's meatball..and you know what a good meatball is.
At the end they only gave us $8.95 discount although the menu stated for $9.95 birthday discount. They said for lunch it's $8.95 off but it doesn't say anywhere. We definitely wont be back.
Went last night for dinner at 7:00 - very busy but we were seated in 10 minutes. The service was friendly and she took our order promptly as we knew what we wanted ( we come here often) the problem was the server forgot to put our order in the computer. We waited 45 minutes before she came over to tell us - which is fine, it can happen but I would expect that when this mis-hap was discovered our dinner would be pushed to the front of the line. We watched plate after plate come out before ours, took probably 1 hour and 20 minutes to get two dinners! They took 10% off the bill. I am giving them a "pass" this time because I do love this place and normally they are really good. Looked like new servers so maybe they are learning. The food is very good though!
Their pasta's have always been a hit and always such a good deal. You have to order a "large", simply so you can have 3 or 4 meals... The Hot Caesar salad is fabulous. But man did they miss the mark on the Tri-Colour Pasta (red, white, green- italian flag). It is so very dry I almost couldn't eat it and after taking my impressive amount remaining home - it later simply went into the garbage. My sister and I felt the exact same. Just a little ladle of each sauce over top would have fixed it...
So after reading the good reviews on this website we decided to give this place a try. What a waste of money. Save yourself the trouble and just buy some Olivieri pasta and sauce, it's much better.
First off, we waited a good 15 minutes for our drinks. People who sat down after us were served their drinks first. I guess we were just forgotten about. The pizza bread was really just cheese bread. It wasn't bad, you can't really go wrong with melted cheese on bread but I was expecting some sauce or something on it to make it more "pizza" like.
The pasta was just plain bad. My boyfriend had the linguini in a rose sauce that was so watery it wouldn't stick to the pasta. It was just bland. I had the tricolore pasta which was tortellini in pesto sauce, fettucini alfredo and penne in tomato sauce. It wasn't horrible but really unmemorable and lacking in flavour. Haven't these people heard of garlic? The pesto was the best of the three but that's not saying much.
After our meal I gave the server my credit card. The receipt came back with an amount on it higher than our bill. We waited a while for someone to come over so we could explain it to them but no one did so I had to get up and go to the server station to get it sorted. When they brought the receipt back to us again the lady seemed like she was annoyed with us. It was quite insulting since THEY were the ones who overcharged my card in the first place.
Overall I felt like it was a huge waste of time and money. If you want some amazing pasta actually made from scratch in-house make the trip downtown to Cafe Luxy on Davie Street. They make fabulous pasta and incredible sauces.
I hate going out to eat at a restaurant that I can out-cook any day. Amorosa gets a big fat F from me.
I love this place 99% of the time. I live a few blocks away, so I do take-out a lot.
The food is solid. Good portions and nice sauces. If you like your pasta heavy on the sauce, maybe its not the place for you.
Also! I had friends over for dinner with different dietary needs (lactose intolerant, only eats fish, doesn't eat peppers) and I managed to accomodate everyone. They have a great varied menu.
My only beef is a couple of times when I called on a busy night for take-out, I was left on hold (phone on counter) for a long time (one time for 25 minutes). My suggestion to them, if reading, is to get a better system in place for take-out orders.
We had read all the reviews on here before visiting this restaurant, and since most were excellent, and only a couple of bad, we figured the bad were isolated events. Well if they are, we hit on one such event.
The service wan't to bad, average, nothing to complain about, and the ambiance is ok too.
The food however is quite disappointing. The calamari was very greasy, and soggy, and rubbery.
The cheese on our pasta tasted like plastic cheese, you know like Velveeta...terrible.
I like to give places the benefit of the doubt, and I gave them the benefit, and went in knowing of the criticism, and still was quite disappointed.