Limoncello Ristorante & Bar, Chester Springs, PA – A Review

by artfuldiner on October 7, 2023

in Artful Diner Review, Breaking News, Opinion, Pennsylvania, Review, Wining and Dining

Limoncello Ristorante & Bar

499 East Uwchlan Avenue (Route 113)

Chester Springs, Pennsylvania

(610) 524-3112

Nestled snugly into a corner of the Lionsville Shopping Center, Limoncello opened its doors a little over a decade ago – and has been packing them in ever since. The younger sibling of the restaurant of the same name in West Chester, both establishments are owned and operated by members of the Mingrino family.

Limoncello - ExteriorI’ve dined at the Chester Springs outpost on numerous occasions over the past ten years (this is my third review), and I freely confess that very little has changed in the interim. To the right as you enter is the contemporary Tuscan-esque dining area replete with nooks & crannies specifically designed for small gatherings; to the left is the bar/lounge awash with high-top tables and four flat screen TVs. This latter space is exceedingly comfortable and, to my way of thinking – especially should you be dining à deux – preferable to the main dining room, which can be overrun by extended families, large parties, and noisy, ill-behaved progeny.

The cuisine remains solidly and unapologetically southern Italian, comfortingly familiar and very good, indeed… Limoncello - Bruschetta 2And from the moment the complimentary Bruschetta (pictured) hits the table, you know you’re in good hands. The bread is properly crunchy, yielding a satisfying “bite” without causing any possible permanent damage to your outrageously expensive dental work; the olive oil, diced tomatoes, and onions are properly proportioned, which is to say not so generous as to dislodge from their perch and land unceremoniously in your lap; and the seasonings – especially the garlic – are just right.

When contemplating your luncheon/dinner order, please keep one factor firmly in mind: Entrée portions here tend to Limoncello - Caesar Salad halfrun on the humongous side (and I do not exaggerate; please note the photograph below). So, unless you happen to have the peristaltic capacity of a starving yak, appetizers – which are also quite generous – will be entirely superfluous (and doggie bags something of a necessity). On the other hand, if you simply must have a starter – I would highly recommend – as my dining partner and I did recently – sharing a Caesar Salad. The Caesar is especially good here, and the chef will be happy to halve your order before it leaves the kitchen (pictured).

Pastas run the gamut… from the sublime simplicity of Spaghetti & Meatballs adorned with South Philly Sunday sauce… to Lobster Ravioli… to the strikingly innovative Pear & Cheese Sacchetti, sweet pear & ricotta stuffed pasta purses with mascarpone cream & toasted Limoncello - Chicken Messinapistachios. Likewise, entrées proper traverse a similarly intriguing culinary terrain… A marvelous rendition of one of my favorite dishes, Veal Saltimbocca… a delightfully delicate Branzino Scampi, companioned by shrimp and kissed by a white wine lemon butter sauce… and a restaurant favorite, Chicken Messina pictured). The parmesan-crusted chicken breast is stuffed with asparagus, Prosciutto di Parma, and fresh mozzarella, consummated with caprese cream sauce, mixed mushrooms & pancetta, and served up with a generous tangle of linguine. Not terribly photogenic, but the various elements work very well together – the chicken is perfectly moist, and that irresistible caprese cream will keep you coming back for more. Definitely worth the price of admission.

On this most recent visit, however, my dining partner and I initially decided upon the very same entrée: Eggplant Parmigiana, which both of us had enjoyed Limoncello - Eggplant Parm Flatbreadon previous occasions. But once she spotted the fact that Eggplant Parm could also be ordered as a flatbread… that sealed the deal. For while the Eggplant Parmigiana, like the above-mentioned Chicken Messina, wasn’t exactly a unique photo opportunity, the flatbread version was a totally different story. Beautifully adorned with splashes of tomato sauce, fried eggplant, mozzarella, Parmigiano Reggiano, basil, and rosettes of Grand Ricotta, the presentation was a delightful feast for the eye as well as the palate (pictured).

Limoncello - Choc Peanut Butter GanachePlenteous entrée portions notwithstanding, desserts are certainly worth saving room for. There are – but of course – many of the usual suspects: Chocolate Soufflé, Crème Brûlée, Cannoli, and Tiramisù. However, if you are something of a dessert fanatic, take my advice: Go for the gold. Which means, when they are available, Bananas Foster Cheesecake, creamy New York-style cheesecake topped with caramel drizzle; and, a personal fave, the Chocolate Peanut Butter Ganache (pictured), homemade velvet chocolate cake filled with creamy peanut butter mousse and a rich icing of semi-sweet chocolate & whipped cream.

Despite my obsession with the chocolate peanut butter combo, however, the real star of the show here is Limoncello - Lemoncello Cakeundoubtedly the incredibly wicked Limoncello Cake (pictured). The rich, buttery cake is splashed with – you guessed it – limoncello liqueur, filled with chunks of white chocolate, consummated with a limoncello glaze, and topped with a dollop of vanilla ice cream… Don’t even think about the calories!

Oh, by the way… the mixologist here is quite adept, as my dining partner’s Cosmo and my Negroni were both prepared to perfection. The restaurant also boasts a select wine list with a number of interesting options available by the glass.

Bon Appétit & Cheers!


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