Saturday 25th January 2014

It wasn't the most auspicious of starts to spending an evening at Olivio's, a new-ish Italian/Mexican combo on Victoria Road in Old Town. I rang earlier in the week to make the booking but the phone just rang. And rang. And rang.

Cross and frustrated I sent out a tweet to @OlivioSwindon along the lines of 'answer your flipping phone'. Almost instantly I got a response, and to cut a long story short, the manager called me and the booking was made. But it oh so nearly wasn't! That was a good come-back Olivio's - well done. However, if you haven't yet, then do something about that endlessly ringing phone and get a message on it asking for the caller's number and ensure you call them back.

So anyway, last night, myself and five others converged on the place to try it out. And a very pleasant evening it turned out to be. The restaurant is small, long and narrow and done out in citrusy colours with comfy padded bench seating along the long wall and the all-important (to me anyway) votives on the tables.

The menu held no surprises, this isn't fine dining - which is not to say that what we had wasn't very nice because it most certainly was. The USP of the place is that you can combine the two styles of cuisine in one meal, allowing you to indulge in an Italiente calamari starter followed by a Chimichanga - or whatever combination floats your own particular gastronomic boat.

Not wanting a starter I asked for a few olives to nibble with my glass of white wine whilst others in the party enjoyed their starters. Whilst these didn't come especially cheap at £2.50 there was a good bowl full of them, more than enough to share - a bonus as I've sometimes, on asking for olives, been given only 3 or 4.  For my main course I opted for the pulled pork chimichanga in BBQ sauce. It came with refried beans and rice and was actually very tasty. At approx £9 it was a good-value plate.  Between the group a good range of their menu was sampled from Calamari and Mozzarella sticks to lasagne, fajitas, steak and chimichangas - and I'm happy to report that, to a man/woman, all the food was considered tasty.

Not being a dessert person I didn't bother with that though everyone else did - see some pictures on the blog post - and yet again all was enjoyed. On the subject of comebacks, Olivio's did it again at this stage. One of the  group asked for profiteroles to be told that there were none available, so she opted for ice-cream instead. However, by the time the desserts were consumed a plate of profiteroles were proffered and offered on the house - and so course we swiftly dispensed with those.

My only gripe really is the price of drinks, though I realize it's much the same in most places - but it is frustrating that I spent more on two not very big glasses of palatable but not amazing wine than I did on food. And it's that kind of thing that stops me eating out more often.  But that's a general rather than a specific groan.

But overall, it was all very tasty and good value so I'd say give it a go. The place is quite small and was very busy last night so I'd recommend booking. You never know - they might have got better at answering the phone by now...