Review: Not Just Pasta at Anton’s

by gigi on October 15, 2008

It was Gene’s birthday and he decided that our team should celebrate at Anton’s Pasta Bar in Burnaby.  For those of you who haven’t tried the Anton’s experience, it’s a pasta place that is well known for its extremely large portions.  I’m not sure if it is still the case these days, but they used to have a promotion going that if you could finish an entire dinner size pasta entree by yourself, you would be the proud owner of an Anton’s ballpoint pen.  Personally, I didn’t see how this would motivate someone to eat so much pasta in one seating but I knew many people who saw this as a personal challenge.  :)

I was a bit wary of eating even a lunch-sized portion of pasta for lunch since I had to go back to work afterwards so I decided to try one of their salads.  I went for the spinach salad because they used a vinaigrette dressing instead of a creamy one.  Even the salads at Anton’s come in large and small sizes.  Since I was only planning to eat salad for lunch, I thought I should go for the large size but our server advised us that small would be more than enough.  Even though my salad just consisted of spinach, mushrooms, and bacon bits, it was more than enough to fill me up for lunch.

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You do have to be careful if you’re ordering salad only to be healthy though.  Alison ordered a seafood salad with Anton’s special dressing and she was presented with a generous heaping of dressing.  She told me the salad was pretty good though, albeit a bit heavy on the dressing.

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Some of us added some chicken to our salads for some additional protein.  You had a choice of garlic chicken or spicy chicken.  I chose the spicy chicken, which just turned out to be fried chicken in a tabasco-based sauce.  The batter was not too heavy but I found that the spicy sauce didn’t go with my salad at all.

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In a party as large as ours, it’s almost a given that someone would order a pasta dish.  :)  Christina chose the spiral pasta with seafood and mushrooms in a cream sauce.  She also requested whole wheat conchiglie instead of the regular egg version.

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Jay had the penne bombay, which also had prawns and was served in a creamy curry sauce.  It was something different and the curry actually went pretty well with the pasta.

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Gene decided to go for penne alle’ Emiliana, which had chorizo, bacon, and black olives.  The server recommended that Gene also add pine nuts, which would add some additional crunch to the pasta.

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Anton’s can sometimes get pretty busy so lunch is a pretty good alternative to dinner if you want to avoid the crowds.  The restaurant doesn’t take any reservations though so if you are going in a large group, it’s best to go earlier.  I generally find the pastas at Anton’s to be too heavy on the sauce or too oily, but the salads turned out to be a nice alternative.  You just need to watch what kind of salad dressing is used.  :)

Details:
4260 E. Hastings St, Burnaby
(604) 299-6636

Summary:
Food: [rating:2.5]
Service: [rating:3]
Price: $$

Anton's Pasta Bar on Urbanspoon

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