Restaurant: Presto Cucina
Last visited: February 27, 2011
Location: Surrey, BC (South Surrey/White Rock)
Address: 2655 King George Hwy
Price Range: $10-20
1: Poor 2: OK 3: Good 4: Very good 5: Excellent 6: Tres Excellent!!
Food: 2 (based on what I tried)
Service: 2 (pay at cashier)
- Italian pizza and pasta franchise
- 4 locations in Metro Vancouver
- Known for pizzas
- Offers pastas/appies
- Pre made sauces
- Family friendly
- Simple “Italian” food
- Quite pricey
- Very casual
- Eat in/Take out
**Recommendations: n/a, but if you’re coming than I’d stick to the pizza. I had the garlic chicken pizza and it was pretty good.
This is a bit embarrassing, but I actually didn’t know Presto Cucina was a franchise with four locations in Metro Vancouver. However I was not surprised one bit after discovering that it was. The outside was kind of attractive, and it looked clean and contemporary, so I decided to come check it out. Originally I was on my way for schnitzel at Black Forest when I realized it was closed forever (too bad, I was so curious), so I ended up here instead.
I was expecting the inside to be a bit fancier, but it’s a casual family friendly kind of place. It reminded me of the old Pizza Hut restaurants, with that old fashioned “trying so hard to be Italian” kind of look. For this kind of atmosphere I was expecting prices to be more affordable than they were. It’s actually quite pricey for what you’re getting and I didn’t see the value.
To my surprise they also serve a limited selection of basic wines and beers too. The wines are 1/2 price every Tuesday… but 1/2 price Yellowtail wouldn’t exactly be incentive for me to really come back.
They offer eat in or take out service, but it wasn’t really busy for either on a Sunday night. The service is a pay at cashier operation where you place your order, pay and then wait for it to be brought to your table. It’s pretty much high school students running the kitchen and I was really pleased to see the brick oven, until I realized it was more of a decoration 🙁 Well it could have been used, but those iron metal doors facing the front, with recipes stashed in the handles, yeah those were never opened… so maybe there’s a back door to the oven?
I kind of feel really bad for posting this photo, but I also kind of don’t. If they’re not embarrassed to showcase the canned pineapples and artichokes, then should I really be embarrassed to feature them in this post? Well I made the image a bit smaller because I do kind of feel bad. It’s not a crime to use canned ingredients, but you can at least hide them because it’s not really something to be proud of either.
To be honest, I can’t say I was impressed by Presto Cucina, and I wasn’t expecting much either after discovering it was a franchise. There was just so much pre-packaged/pre-made sauces going on that I wasn’t feeling it. The dishes are made upon order, but also from mostly preserved ingredients. Most of the stuff tasted the same with a few added fresh ingredients here and there, but more or less it was singing one note. The food actually didn’t taste bad, if anything it was just okay, which means I ate it because it was there but not really because I enjoyed it. However for what you’re paying, you can certainly get better elsewhere and that kind of leaves me not very inspired to write much more.
- Creamy garlic sauce, sliced chicken, fresh roma tomato, mushrooms & feta $10.99/$25.99
- The pizza actually tasted pretty good, but it was just overpriced for the size and ingredients.
- There wasn’t much chicken, but the chicken had that precooked rubbery texture and flavour.
- The pizza tastes like a garlic alfredo chicken pizza so really no surprises.
- The crust tastes like well seasoned salty, garlic, herb and cheese bread sticks, so it was actually very flavourful, but it’s just soft throughout.
- It was creamy, cheesy and saucy, and the mushrooms were a bit dried out and shriveled so they weren’t sweet or adding much flavour.
- The roma tomatoes were basically the only fresh thing on it, and there were salty bites of Feta at times, but not much of that either.
- I look forward to the execution of the pizza crust.
- The pizza crust didn’t have a smoky or charred flavour from supposedly being baked in a brick oven, and it wasn’t crispy at all.
- The salty flavour of the crust just enhanced the saltiness of the toppings, so for some it may have been too salty, but for me it was fine.
- Creamy pesto with toasted pine nuts, sundried tomatoes, mushrooms & fresh spinach $11.99/$15.99
- This is something you can make at home with some jarred pesto from the store. However you’d probably be using fresher ingredients at home so it would taste better.
- The chicken again was rubbery and precooked, but the flavour of the sauce was actually not bad.
- The mushrooms were pretty dried out and I literally had two toasted pine nuts throughout the whole thing.
- The noodles are overcooked and it’s not ultra creamy, but it’s well sauced and there is and herby flavour, but it’s not necessarily basil.
- It tasted like the sauce from the garlic chicken pizza, but with some pesto sauce, which didn’t have any pine nuts in it either.
- At times it was a bit too salty especially if you got one of the two pieces of sun dried tomatoes in it.
- Tri-coloured tortellini baked with alfredo sauce, feta cheese, red onion, mushrooms & fresh roma tomato $14.99
- This was really overpriced for what it was, it’s edible, but not something I would order again. This is when I started to feel like it was “Subway” for pasta.
- It pretty much tastes like the garlic chicken pizza, but instead of chicken it’s smoked salmon and instead of pizza crust, it’s pasta.
- It’s premade tortellini and sauce with a few fresh ingredients tossed in before it’s baked. It tastes somewhat okay, but there’s no value.
- The tortellini was obviously frozen, but it was overcooked and it was stuffed with some pastey cheese that I think was supposed to be white cheddar cheese?
- The alfredo sauce tastes like the same pre-made sauce on the garlic chicken pizza.
- The smoked salmon were a few thin sheets just laid over the top the pasta with another layer of baked cheese on top.
- It’s quite a cheesy, rich and hearty pasta, but the sauce is actually quite thin, yet savoury and basically a regular alfredo sauce you’d get at the store.
- With whipped cream & a sprinkle of grated chocolate $5.99
- All desserts are imported from a company in the US.
- I really could have done without the bottled caramel drizzle, but I can see how they may have wanted to “present” it better.
- The tiramisu actually didn’t taste bad, but there’s not much of a mascarpone layer or any espresso flavour, so it wasn’t well made either.
- It was quite dense and creamy, rather than moussey.
- The lady fingers weren’t really soaked enough so the espresso flavour didn’t come through and it seemed a bit “sitting there”.
- There was no Rum in it, which makes sense since it’s a family kind of place, so I wasn’t expecting it, but just noting it.