Primo Trattoria opened in mid-October 2008. They specialize in cheese, pasta, and pizza. There are four dining areas (possibly 5 as it looks like they have a private room in back). As you walk in through the gate there are a couple of tables on either side, to the right front tables, to the right back tables, and with a fishhook left more tables. To the left of the kitchen before you get to the left tables is a deli counter.
The kitchen is an open kitchen which is nice and they pull it off as everyone in the kitchen appears confident while being quiet. The owner is also the head chef who lived and worked in Italy.
The restaurant is cleanly decorated and could be considered trendy but with a total lack of pretention. The service was excellent and Morris was very knowledgeable about the wine and dishes.
The wine list is made up of groups $650, $850, and $1200 per bottle. Upon recommendation we ordered the 2007 Fontana Candida Togale Merlot. Nice color and nice legs but needs to breathe a while. Call ahead and have them open it about half an hour before you get there. Note it is in the $1200 group. Overpriced, but still cheaper than Canoviano charges ($1500).
We ordered the beef Carpaccio ($320) which was very good. In addition to the standard Carpaccio at other places the dish came topped with fresh arugula and the grated cheese is superior.
We also ordered the prosciutto pizza ($380 – 10 inch) and the linguini with balsamic ($320). The pizza had prosciutto (ed. Really?), mixed cheese, fresh arugula, and fresh tomato. I was concerned when I saw the menu said cherry tomato thinking it would be another Bellini experience. However, it worked out fine. The chewy pizza crust is unusually addictive. I’m not going to attempt to describe it. The pizza, as most of the other pizzas on the menu, was very light and refreshing. Somewhat like a salad with a nice piece of bread.
The linguini with balsamic (Linguine al Balasmico) was also very interesting and delicious. The tang of the vinegar and the creamy mascarpone with the perfectly cooked pasta will have you satisfied while curious as the different flavors arrive.
Since everything was so good we ordered the beef steak ($680). We were already full but… The sirloin is grilled and served with a gorgonzola based sauce. Very rich, but so, oh so, fulfilling.
For dessert they have 6-7 on the dessert tray ($100-120). We tried the mascarpone raison dessert and the tiramisu. The mascarpone dessert was well done but it would be nice for some people in your party if a syrup or melted sugar glaze could be added to sweeten it up. The tiramisu was ok. Not very cheese flavored but the bitter chocolate was good. More brandy also needed.
Primo Trattoria is also an importer. At the deli counter you will see an abundance of various cheese that you can buy to take home. As you enter the restaurant you will also see a glassed cooler where they keep cheese and desserts.
If you order the Caesar salad they will come to your table to personally grate the cheese from a wheel of cheese.
Overall a restaurant to watch out for. I haven’t been this pleasantly surprised since Herbs got their young chef.
1Fl, No. 14, Lane 107, Fuxing South Road, Section 1
From ChungShiao Fuxing MRT exit 5 walk north about 5 minutes until Lane 107 (Skylark California restaurant). Turn right into the lane and walk just past the first small intersection and it is on your right.