THE county's latest food offering is simmering nicely before it explodes and amazes the town people's taste buds.

We went back to Amicis, the new Italian restaurant set to open on Penarth Esplanade at the site of the old Casa de Margarita, and things are moving fast.

The tables and chairs are in, there’s a swanky new waiting/ drinking area at the entrance, the bar décor is looking smooth and the kitchen is getting its final tweaks before the man only known as ‘Eddie’ moves his highly regarded team in from Pontypool.

Amicis Pontypool supplies popular Italian fare to the people of Torfaen, but the bustling restaurant is set to close for a month as Eddie moves his team to Penarth to give 100 per cent attention to the new restaurant on the Esplanade.

What can you expect from Eddie and the team? Pizzas, pasta, risotto, steak, fish, chicken all cooked fresh.

Barry And District News: New Italian restaurant Amici D'Italia is taking shape in PenarthNew Italian restaurant Amici D'Italia is taking shape in Penarth (Image: Newsquest)

What Eddie is also famed for back in Pontypool is the service and his meticulous attention to detail when it comes to training his staff.

“I have worked a long time in the industry,” explained Eddie. “I know where the key to the training is and what staff need to do.”

Owner of Beach Cliff Hotel Apartments Richard Hayward, who is the landlord at Amicis and who convinced Eddie to come down and give Penarth a go, thinks it’s the most exciting thing they’ve done on the Esplanade so far.

“What this will provide is a very good food offering,” said Mr Hayward. “It’s not cheap, but it’s also not expensive. It’s value for money at one of the best venues restaurants in Wales can provide.”

Barry And District News: Landlord Richard Hayward (right) says Eddie (left) will be a phenomenon in PenarthLandlord Richard Hayward (right) says Eddie (left) will be a phenomenon in Penarth (Image: Newsquest)

Barry And District News: The restaurant will specialise in quality Italian fareThe restaurant will specialise in quality Italian fare (Image: Newsquest)

Barry And District News: The swish looking barThe swish looking bar (Image: Newsquest)

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Mr Hayward previously described Edmund as a “phenomenon” as someone who is willing to take people in and train them from scratch.

“Amici’s is going to blast its way through Penarth,” said Mr Hayward.

“Edmund focuses more on front of house and if you have strong front of house and chefs making good food, they can keep the customers happy.”

Barry And District News: Those famous views from the EsplanadeThose famous views from the Esplanade (Image: Newsquest)

The restaurant will have the outside space back – like it did when it was Casa de Margarita – and it plans to offer a pizza and coffee window – where, while on one side there will be the restaurant, on the other, those who have just jumped out of the sea after a swim or a paddleboard can rock up to the counter and help their aching limbs recuperate with a refreshing beer and a slice of margarita, something Eddie very much agrees with.

“When we open, everyone is welcome,” said Eddie. “There will be something for everyone.”

Amicis plans to open on the evening of February 18. After that it plans to be open seven days a week, Monday to Saturday midday to 11pm and Sunday midday to 10pm. Go to their website for bookings.