I have heard on several occasions people raving about L’Opera, and even sparking half-hour conversations going into elaborate detail about their truffle sauce and the delightful melt-in-your-mouth smoothness of the tiramisu. And I’ve always thought these people need to get out more if this is what their conversation is reduced to. Nothing can be that good.

So when I got an invite to go to their Venetian Carnival, I thought what a great opportunity to see the source of the excited mouth-watering conversations. Expecting to return home fully satisfied that I hadn’t been missing out these last few months and that my cynicism was justified.

On arrival I was handed a Venetian mask and greeted with a delicious cocktail. The garden was decorated with colonnades around the dance floor, there was a gondola taking people on trips out onto the lake, a fire juggler performed during dinner, all the waiters and waitresses were dressed in Venetian masks and outfits.  So 10 out of 10 for effort.

The moment I had been waiting for arrived: the food. This was the chance to see what all the fuss was about. They had a long table filled with a copious choice of anti-pasties; seafood salad, beef carpaccio, vitello tonnato to name but a few of the culinary delights offering themselves.

The main course was again served on a long table of dish after dish of tantalising delicacies all just as good as the next. The highlights for me were the pork served with a truffle sauce, King prawns in a refreshing light lemon sauce and the pièce de résistance a quattro formaggi  pasta served in a giant 50cm by 50cm parmesan which had been carved out to create a very sumptuous receptacle. The perfect combination of the cheeses resulted in an explosion of flavour in every bite. Needless to say wine was flowing all evening.

The night came to a close after a dance with a pair of doves sweeping over the guests showering them with rose petals.

I now understand why everyone raves about L’Opera, and I have to admit that I too have been reduced to one of those people who shouts its delights.

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