We took the car and went on a far flung meander to Apulia on Italy’s heel last year, staying in Peschici while we soaked up the sun and lazed by the Adriatic. I remember ice cold beer, lots of olive oil chillis and even the odd plate of aglio e olio.

If there was any Tiella on offer in the many restaurants we lounged in while on the Gargano I didn’t see it. And having tasted some here tonight, rain howling down on Glasgow’s Hyndland Street outside, that’s a shame.

This apparent Apulian classic of Arborio rice, potato – yes starch and starch together is a relatively common Italian style but don’t tell Masterchef – and tomatoes, has been enhanced with some Scottish mussels. It’s not wet and creamy like risotto, but relatively dry and rich; the rice, potato and oil melding into a simple yet pleasant taste.

There were of course plenty of those little orecchiette available in Peschichi, pasta served like tonight with turnip tops, pecorino and tomato. And if we’d looked hard enough we may have come upon some of these famously hand-made fusilli from Gragnano in nearby Campania; bronze extruded, air dried, served tonight in Glasgow with whole baby calamari.

Yes, this is another Italian restaurant in Glasgow but one that’s trying to be a little different. The decor here is relaxed/comfortable, easy on the eye, no national flags or team photos, the music a gentle selection of Christmas tunes.

Hang on. Yes, I did say Christmas tunes. In October. I can only assume the chatty Italian restaurant manager who zips about pleasantly here there and everywhere has understandably tuned into his very own own sound system.

Anyway, we have good arancini to start as Bing croons, those deep-fried Italian rice balls stuffed variously with scamorza and nduja, meaty ragu or just flavoured with saffron. I order them at £5.95. Then panic when I notice the word “or” appearing between their flavour descriptions. 'Mamma mia, £5.95 each,' I say to Debs and Luca and, later, to the manager when he asks for feedback. For an Italian staple street food? It turns out that’s the price for a plate of three. Phew. Bargain then.

Talking about snacks we have already had popizze, or fried pizza dough with salt and seaweed. Warning – incoming nostalgia moment: when we were children and my mum made these, as she did regularly, there was no seaweed, but they were occasionally stuffed with one salty alici – or anchovy – each and always, always, studded with fennel seed. We called them shoosh. No idea how to spell that or whether it’s a dialect or family name but they were delicious. These are obviously not as good as mum’s or my nonna’s, (what could be?) but great to see them on a menu.

Good, too, to see my absolute favourite Italian pasta – apart from my mum’s day two re-fried spaghetti – agli e oglio. They do kind of throw it away in here though. Kind of dismissing it as a classic which can be ordered if you don’t fancy anything else on the menu. When in fact and done properly – not easy – it is surely the king and queen of all pastas, and still rarely available in Glasgow.

Now, never before in all my years as Scotland’s plumpest restaurant reviewer, have so many people asked me not to review a restaurant until it’s had a chance to bed in. That’s because the owners of Rossini’s here ran The North Star on nearby Queen Margaret Drive. There, the charm of Ester out front and Maurizio in the open kitchen built up a tidal wave of goodwill for the young couple. Lots of fingers are therefore crossed for this place. Really, they needn’t be: the food’s good. Different. The kitchen maybe still needs to relax and season more, lose a few of those baby tomatoes.

But something new, brave and Italian, run by an Italian husband and wife team? Surely the magic restaurant recipe.