Arts & Entertainment

Restaurant Spotlight: La Promessa

La Promessa Pasta, Seafood and Steaks has just recently opened on Lee Highway, replacing Aldo’s Italian Steakhouse, and is already leaving a lasting impression. Lively, vibrant paintings adorn the scarlet walls and the restaurant’s dim lighting creates the perfect romantic atmosphere, ideal for that first date.

The slogan goes: “Benvenuto alla famiglia” and I sure felt welcomed. The staff is incredibly amiable; the waitress with a lovely-but-unpronounceable name greeted us with a big smile and displayed exceptional service.

For starters, the Fried Calamari ($7.99) is simply splendid. Even while being a picky eater, I found myself devouring my friend’s plate after initially stating I would try only one, to save room for my Chicken Marsala ($14.95). Even had I been full when the main course arrived, I would have made room. The Chicken Marsala was gone as quickly as it came. It consists of Marsala wine, garlic and mushrooms served over a bed of angel hair pasta. It was my personal favorite. Other tempting entrees include the Mediterranean White Fish ($15.95), dabbed in a tomato sauce and served with broccoli and red potatoes.  The Impepata Di Cozze ($15.85) is a pound of calamari and mussels cooked in garlic and white wine, then finished off with fresh Italian parsley and ground black pepper. Another appealing dish is the Eggplant Parmesan ($11.95) — eggplant topped with tomatoes, mozzarella and parmesan cheese served with your choice of vegetable and a side of linguine and clam sauce. The presentation of every dish is top-notch and almost too pretty to eat — almost.

The pasta options include fettuccine, linguine, capellini and gnocchi as well, with the Penne and Bolognese sauce — a classic tomato sauce with ground veal and beef — making a tasty dish to be sure.

Now, I consider myself a loyal daughter, but perhaps La Promessa can offer my mother a few tips on how to make pasta in true Italian fashion.

Also known for its steaks, La Promessa offers a delicious selection. The 8-oz. Rib Eye Steak ($15.95) is served with a baked potato and vegetables. Perfectly cooked and certainly appetizing, I later greatly appreciated the necessary toothpick jar offered to me on my way out. Other steaks include the New York Strip Steak ($18.95), a 13 oz. Strip Sirloin — served with garlic, mashed potatoes and any choice of vegetable — and the Filet Mignon. The filet is offered as a choice of either an 8 oz. ($17.95), or a 10 oz. ($19.99) cut served with a choice of vegetable and baked potato.

The array of desserts is riveting. For example, the Exotic Bamba ($6.95) — who could refuse an offer to try something with a name like that? Imagine this: a ball of thin white chocolate covering mango sorbet with a hint of pear, which in turn is layered over raspberry sorbet. It is a “delicacy” I am certainly returning to the restaurant for. Another treat is the La Promessa Fruittodeterra. An Italian cracker is layered with mascarpone cheese, a slice of mango with a dollop of fig jam and drizzled with chocolate and even a few berries.

Every meal is made with as many organic, fresh ingredients as possible, so this is a great place for the health conscious.

The Luigi Bar, a classy room meant for a relaxing night, is to the right of the Capone room.

This spacious restaurant has everything. The green parsley, white wine and red walls seemed to exclaim “Italia!”

Brand new, open for just 31 days at the time of our visit, its grand opening will be in September.



La Promessa

7630 Lee Highway

Falls Church, VA 22042

Tel: (703) 560-0933 or 0934

Hours: Monday-Thursay : 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.

Friday and Saturday:11 a.m. – 1 a.m.

Sunday: 4 p.m. – 9 p.m.