Des Moine’s Allora serves home-cooked, budget-friendly Italian food

A roasted chicken panini combo, basil tomato and house salad from Allora ($14). Photo: Linh Ta/Axios

If you are looking For some homemade Italian dishes without breaking the bank, head to Allora for lunch, the new Italian-inspired restaurant at the Krause Gateway Center.

State of play: The combo is a good way to go – it’s similar to Panera Bread’s “You Pick Two”, but in a more sophisticated way.

  • Get a panini, soup and salad for $14 or pasta and salad for $11.

What I tried: “Porcine Dream” is pasta in a creamy sauce with crispy and salty pieces of porchetta and pancetta sourced locally from La Quercia and Berkwood farms.

  • The star of the dish is the thick homemade pasta, homemade and just a little chewy. You will be sleepy after eating this, but definitely satisfied.
pig dream
“Porcine Dream” with ham, porchetta and pancetta with onions and pine nuts in nduja sauce. Photo: Linh Ta/Axios

My catering partner got a chicken panini which contrasted well with the crusty bread and melty white cheddar cheese.

  • The standout was the thick tomato and basil soup which had a bit of cheesy tang on top and was perfect for dipping.

Pro tip: There are fantastic views and it’s a great place to stop and park if you’re heading to a festival downtown.

Open: 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Monday to Friday. Located at 1459 Grand Avenue, Des Moines.

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