Restaurant Review: Alt Pizza’s ‘The Altalian Fest’ isn’t afraid to push the boundaries of ‘fusion’ food

The Koramangala restaurant's limited-time food festival dares to blend the seemingly disparate worlds of Italian and East Asian cuisines. But can the two ever meet?

ByAnagha Maareesha

Published Aug 28, 2023 | 6:30 PMUpdatedAug 28, 2023 | 6:30 PM

Alt Pizza, an Italian restaurant, has teamed up with its sister brand, Nasi and Mee to curate a fusion food festival.

Italian and Asian cuisines may seem like the antithesis of each other, especially since they come from opposite sides of the world.

Surprisingly, they share more similarities than meets the eye. These two cuisines have a deep historical connection and also common ingredients.

In the heart of Koramangala, Alt Pizza, an Italian restaurant, has teamed up with its sister brand, Nasi and Mee, to bring the two cuisines together. Both brands are part of the digital restaurant company Foodsta Kitchens.

Their collaboration has birthed a unique food festival named The Altalian Fest.

Intrigued by this daring culinary experiment, South First decided to sample the eclectic offerings at this restaurant.

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History’s mysteries

The Mala Express.

The Mala Express. (Supplied)

There is nothing as Italian as pasta. But its history is a tantalising tale with debated origins.

Legend has it that famous traveller Marco Polo visited China in the 13th century and brought back noodles to Italy. Although this may likely be more fiction than fact, it is possible that the dish may have come from the East via trade routes.

Regardless, noodles and dumplings have graced Chinese tables long before spaghetti and ravioli entered Italian kitchens.

While these origins may forever be shrouded in mystery, the festival at Alt Pizza offers a modern take on the meeting of these two legendary cuisines.

A dance of Asian sauces and broths accompanies Italian classics, a culinary tango that showcases the potential of fusion cuisine.

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A gastronomic journey

The Mala Express takes centre stage as the first dish on this bold menu. Stuffed with Cajun-spiced chicken, the ravioli takes a flavourful plunge into a broth featuring Mala seasoning — a blend of Sichuan peppercorns and chilis originating from China.

This spicy seasoning forms the base of the broth, which also includes pineapple juice, galangal, lemongrass, coconut milk, and Madras curry powder.

The complex layers of flavour in the broth — the freshness of pineapple, the richness of coconut milk, and the spice from the seasoning — pair very well with the delicate ravioli, resulting in a symphony of tastes.

A delightful rendezvous of ravioli and dumplings is witnessed in the Edamame Truffle. These dumplings brim with cream cheese, truffle oil, edamame, and pepper, all resting on a bed of creamy, yet fiery Sriracha-infused sauce.

If you are a truffle lover, this one is a must-try, though those not fond of bold flavours might want to skip it.

What I liked about the dish was how it reminded me of a hearty and cheesy pasta dish, but with a hint of Asian influence.

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Slice of creativity

Kween Margherita pizza. (Anagha Maareesga/South First)

Alt Pizza is renowned for its artisanal sourdough pizzas. At this festival, their classic Kween Margherita pizza gets a revamp.

The Kween Margherita pizza maintains its classic essence with crushed tomato sauce, fresh basil, and shaved parmesan cheese.

Yet, a twist awaits with the addition of XO chili sauce jam — a fiery condiment from Hong Kong, that is garlicky and rich in umami flavour.

The final flourish of the pizza is the ball of burrata cheese in the middle — a perfect combination in my mind.

A sweet finish

The journey concluded on a sweet note with the Milo Tiramisu.

In Asian countries like Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore, Milo is a staple and beloved drink, not just for kids as is the case in India.

Alt Pizza’s rendition of the traditional Italian Tiramisu — usually a blend of coffee, biscuits, and mascarpone cheese — is rejuvenated with malty Milo notes.

The result is a symphony of flavours that beckons you to savour every bite.

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A taste of fearlessness

Milo Tiramisu.

Milo Tiramisu. (Supplied)

Alt Pizza lives up to its name by boldly venturing into culinary experimentation.

The Altalian Fest proves that the boundaries of taste can be stretched and blended to create something extraordinary.

Marco Polo’s connection might remain uncertain, but Alt Pizza’s innovation is crystal clear.

My Picks: Kween Margherita pizza with XO sauce. It’s no surprise that Alt Pizza does pizza best!

My Skips: I would only recommend the Edamame Truffle if you like truffles.

Address: 974, 1st Floor, 80 Feet Rd, Koramangala 4th Block, Koramangala, Bengaluru

Timings: 12 pm to 11 pm

Cost for two: ₹1,700 for two

(If you’re craving an adventure for your palate, make sure to experience The Altalian Fest before it bids adieu at the end of August. Instagram

(The views expressed here are the author’s own.)