The problem with restaurants owned by celebrity chefs is that expectations are, understandably, very, very high.

I went to Luciano by Gino D’Campo on The Strand with my cousin on June 6 and I felt like I was eating like royalty in this evening of sophistication.

I can tell you right now – the sudden words "however", "although", or "unfortunately" are not words you will see in this review.

Quick summary: I loved every bit and each remix. 

We received a warm and efficient welcome where staff took our belongings so we weren’t burdened with our bags and coats, and were taken to our table, handed menus and given a few minutes to make our drinks choices.

I had a Zero If My Grandmother Had Wheels mocktail, made with watermelon, raspberries, grapefruit and lime - very sweet, but very delicious.

Brooke opted for a Zero Trouble In Paradise, rich with passion fruit, mango, pineapple and lime.

The menu offers plenty of authentic choices and we surprised ourselves by ordering the Costine di Miale and – which we embarrassed ourselves ordering with our terrible Italian pronounciation, and the bruschetta con gamberoni.

The costine di miale, which was Tuscan-style bbq pork ribs, came in that absolutely delicious sauce – sweet and sticky – while the ribs themselves were incredibly succulent and just reminiscing about them has me salivating.

(Image: Ezekiel Bertrand)

Funnily enough, that wasn’t my starter since I went with the bruschetta con gamberoni, which were sauteed king prawns with garlic butter, lemon and an amazing chilli mayo on toasted ciabatta.

(Image: Ezekiel Bertrand)

The starters were just as starters should be: not too heavy but filling.

On to our main courses where Brooke ordered, what we badly pronounced, the panica di maiale alla piemontese, which is slow cooked crispy pork belly with candied beetroot, roast red onion, spinach, and watercress salad with toasted hazelnuts.

(Image: Ezekiel Bertrand)

While I’m not a big fan of pork belly, she assured me it was delicious.

Meanwhile, I enjoyed the Polpette, which were slow cooked beef and pork meatballs in a spicy San Marzano tomato sauce and basil.

(Image: Ezekiel Bertrand)

I'm a huge fan of sauce, so having my meatballs practically swimming in it was pure satisfaction for me.

And, as usual, there’s always room for dessert, and we both chose to go for the same thing: panna cotta made of Italian cream with Amaretto liqueur, fresh strawberries and basil.

It gives off the appearance of a jelly because of its jelly-like structure, but once you pierce your spoon through it, it reveals its delicate, creamy interior that melts in your mouth.

(Image: Ezekiel Bertrand)

We received great service from Gianni, who was kind, helpful, knowledgeable, welcoming and professional, and the manager Renato did a fantastic job running the evening without any chaos, even when the restaurant got busy.

Overall, Luciano was an incredible experience, and I highly recommend it to anyone looking to have their high expectations of a celebrity-owned restaurant satisfied.