Who says you can’t find any fine dining restaurants in a small town? Trattoria Gusto, located in Port Hope, Ontario is a perfect example that you can still have good food and service in a small town. Trattoria Gusto is located right beneath The Waddell Hotel, which is one of the preferred hotels around the area. It’s located right at the heart of the downtown Port Hope, which our Summerhill Manor BnB is located so close that we just walked down a few blocks on foot without even the need to drive to Trattoria Gusto.
Once entered the Trattoria Gusto, you will see a few small flat screens on the walls of the restaurant, showing the sports games such as the Leafs and the Raptors. It had a nice L-shaped bar counters for patrons to drink and watch the games. For others, they can choose the comfy chairs to dine either around the bar area or like we did, our dining table was situated in another room. In this main dining room, it had about 10-12 tables. There were couples, party of 4 or a big group of peeps getting ready to celebrate St. Paddy’s Day.
Our friendly server came by and greeted us and gave us the food and drinks menu. From the menu, it provided an extensive list of high quality food items. Lamb carpaccio? I had ordered beef carpaccio before but never lamb, so that’s an item that we wanted to order.
We ordered the following appetizers to share. We ordered the aforementioned lamb carpaccio and steamed mussels from the PEI.
For entrees, we ordered Pomodoro (spaghetti with tomato sauce) and Puttanesca (linguine with shrimps, scallops, capers and sundried tomatoes).
As for dessert, we ordered Gelato and Tiramisu.
The service at first was a bit show but understandable as it’s on a Saturday evening and some patrons were in a hurry to go to the musical shows after dinner. The musicals at The Cameco Capitol Arts Centre is located just a block from the resto. But once those peeps left, it’s a bit less hectic and the service got better.
The lamb carpaccio looked amazing, it’s very nice plate presentation. The taste was delicious as well. Lamb was tender and the crostini was crusty. The steamed mussels was my favourite. It came to our table super steamy, which was a nice touch. The mussels were cooked to a perfection, which means the meat were never overcooked. The sauce was the JEWEL. It’s not the typical mild tomato or white wine sauce but it had some heat with the spicy tomato sauce. I also were impressed that the Italian sausages were added to the sauce, love the entire combo.
Entrees were delicious as well. The Pomodoro looked like a spaghetti tower when it came. The scallops on my Puttanesca were tender and juicy, good in size. I also like the linguine, it wasn’t soggy but just perfect texture. The only thing I didn’t really like were the sundried tomatoes coz it made the sauce a bit bitter and salty at the same time, but that’s not the chef’s fault, it’s just my own preference I preferred not to have it. Anyhow, overall, the pasta dishes were great.
As for the dessert, the Gelato came in a nice dessert glass and whip cream were served along with a few scoops of Gelato. My Tiramisu was good, it’s not spectacular or blown away but it did its job.
The only thing I would say is that, the prices on the food menu could be perceived as a bit on the pricey side for Port Hope standards, coz many of the food items prices were the same as downtown Toronto prices, so that may deter some peeps from dining here. But otherwise, you do get what you pay for with the good service, excellent food selections and the good fine-dining experiences. For a small town like Port Hope to have such a fine dining culinary experience is impressive! I would recommend anyone to dine here. I will definitely come back.
Next time, I would like to check out the outdoor patio in the summer as I heard it has a good view of the river just beside it.
Address: 1 Walton St, Port Hope, ON L1A 2Y8
Phone: (905) 885-1198
The dinner was provided by Trattoria Gusto. However, as always, the opinions expressed in this post is entirely my own.