South Yarra Institution Cosi Is Back, With Generous Bowls of Homemade Pasta and a Roving Grappa Cart

Written for Broadsheet Walking into Cosi feels a little bit like stepping into my nonna’s living room. Roomy booths make it easy to get comfy, there’s a projector playing classic black-and-white films, a grappa cart roves around the room, and in cooler weather the open fireplace gets going. It’s this old-school hospitality that’s made Cosi… Continue reading South Yarra Institution Cosi Is Back, With Generous Bowls of Homemade Pasta and a Roving Grappa Cart

Now Open: Oster, a Modern Take on a Traditional Northern Italian Osteria

Written for Broadsheet Pasta is my thing. I’ve been shovelling it down by the bucketload since I was a kid. I’ve sat in my nonna’s kitchen for hours perfecting the gnocchi roll and churning out sheets of lasagne on her manual machine. A part-time job at a deli taught me about the different shapes –… Continue reading Now Open: Oster, a Modern Take on a Traditional Northern Italian Osteria

Now Open: Cantina Carolina Is Bar Carolina’s New Morning-Oriented Next-Door Neighbour, Inspired by Classic Italian Espresso Bars

Written for Broadsheet A scan of the breakfast menu at Joe Mammone’s new Toorak Road spot, Cantina Carolina, makes it clear this is not another cookie-cutter Melbourne cafe. Classic breakfasts come with an Italian spin. There are ricotta hotcakes with pistachio and mascarpone. Bruschetta with heirloom tomatoes, a poached egg and prosciutto di Parma. Eggplant… Continue reading Now Open: Cantina Carolina Is Bar Carolina’s New Morning-Oriented Next-Door Neighbour, Inspired by Classic Italian Espresso Bars

First Look: The Grand Richmond’s Cheeky, Playful Sibling Piccolo Grand Moves In

Written for Broadsheet Responsible. Reliable. Always winning hearts. The traits of the eldest child mirror those of one of Melbourne’s classic pubs, The Grand Richmond. After closing for renovations earlier this year, the corner site – known for its cosy private dining room and elevated Italian cuisine – has reopened. And now it’s got a… Continue reading First Look: The Grand Richmond’s Cheeky, Playful Sibling Piccolo Grand Moves In

Now Open: A Neighbourhood Pizzeria Inspired by the Caves of Southern Italy

Written for Broadsheet Sunlight floods the front bar of Il Caminetto, drenching the imported Italian terrazzo-tiled bar and woodfire oven with light. But follow the trail of bentwood chairs and dark wooden tables to the dining room beyond and the contrast is dramatic. The darkened space is lit by a couple of timber-framed windows, a… Continue reading Now Open: A Neighbourhood Pizzeria Inspired by the Caves of Southern Italy

A Tiny Armadale Trattoria Reimagined

Written for Broadsheet Slow-cooked beef ragu begins simmering over the stove every morning at Zia Rina’s. As I walk in, the lingering smell brings up the nostalgia of a Sunday visit to nonna’s. The ragu recipe belongs to co-owner and ex-Neptune head chef Danny Natoli’s nonno (grandfather), but the real hero of the tiny trattoria is his zia (aunt) Rina,… Continue reading A Tiny Armadale Trattoria Reimagined

A Traditional Italian Deli in the Heart of Melbourne’s Little Italy

DOC Delicatessen Giovanni Luciano Peluso knows a fair bit about fresh Italian produce. Moving to Australia from Italy in 1975, he’s been deli manager of Lygon Street’s DOC Delicatessen since it opened six years ago. “Prior to that, I’ve been working in the street – in the same industry – almost 30 years,” Peluso says.… Continue reading A Traditional Italian Deli in the Heart of Melbourne’s Little Italy