Mona Lisa Restaurant Offers Casual Italian Dining With a Funky Vibe
Mona Lisa restaurant in the French Quarter offers an appealing combination of reasonable prices in a funky Italian bistro. The restaurant’s namesake lines the walls in a Salvador Dali meets Leonardo Da Vinci mashup. If the artistic spirit moves you, there are crayons on the paper-lined tables to try your hand at sketching your own Mona Lisa for the wall of fame at Mona Lisa restaurant.
Wine selection is reasonably priced and service is friendly and consistent. Salads are large and fresh, and served with a slice of garlic bread which is actually more along the lines of a slice of cheese pizza.
If you’re serious about seafood pizza, it comes loaded with tilapia, shrimp and clams. The clams seem an unlikely addition but it works. Breakfast pizza is also on the menu if you breakfast in the afternoon. The pizza includes scrambled eggs, smoked bacon and a third topping of your choice.
More traditional toppings are also available, including Mediterranean pizza complete with feta, garlic, spinach, black olives and sun-dried tomatoes. Another vegetarian option is the eggplant parmesan served with linguini. The spinach or beef lasagna includes layers of pasta, ricotta and mozzarella cheese, smothered in a traditional New Orleans red sauce.
For dessert, try to save room for hand-made tiramisu, which will be unlikely if you order and finish a stuffed calzone with a multitude of filling options. The calzone pastry is light and delicate, making it a standout on the menu.
Mardi Gras pasta is another popular dish featuring spicy cream sauce, sausage and seafood over linguini. Many of Mona Lisa’s traditional pastas are served with your choice of a zesty marinara (red sauce); or alfredo (white sauce); or herb, butter, lemon and garlic sauce.
The restaurant offers both takeout and delivery, and its popular pizza deliveries fill the French Quarter most nights. Arrive early on the weekends -- there’s often a 45-minute wait as Mona Lisa restaurant is a popular location for date nights and family dinner.
Posted on March 7, 2012 by Karen Beninato