For those of you who were fans of Pinocchios in Toorak will be happy to hear that his woodmaker has arrived in Kew.
The first thing of note on entry, in fact even when you make the booking, is the loudness of the place. It must have something to do with the concrete floors and walls. A great modern interior but do be prepared to shout as they do on the streets of Italy.
Maybe not a good first date place.
I was out with Mr Toorak (you may have met him previously at Cafe Late) and a couple of Kew locals.
Mr Toorak made mention of his love of the waiters' aprons and the wooden stands upon which the food was pleasantly placed (which he contemplated making but was soon reminded that he is not so handy and should just make a purchase).
A very big menu which makes choosing difficult. One side of the menu has a whole lot of starters, small plates, pastas and mains and the other full of pizzas.
I enjoy not ordering and letting others choose - having said that, it really depends on who you are with and whether you think they have good taste. I was in safe hands this night but friends when I dominate the ordering, you now know why.
We started with deep fried pizza dough with a tomoto sauce. An awesome alternative to the regular bread roll which reminded me of a savoury donut.
Cod croquettes were next with a nice hint of caper berries. Better than Mr Bianco's down the road in my view.
The stuffed zuchinni was good but Mr Kew does think his mum's taste better - fair enough.
The arancini was super tasty and the risotto in the centre not overcooked.
For pastas we shared moreton bay bug agnolotti and pumpkin and truffle risotto. Once again cooked al dente and super tasty.
The mains of chicken (yes we ordered chicken) and the lamb shoulder were also very good.
We were stuffed so could only share a piece of lemon tart between four at the end.
Overall the food here is home style Italian cooking with lots of oomph. It is a good place to share with people you really like, as I did last night, and return again and again.
I am jealous of my Kew friends who have such good choice and it keeps on growing.
$80 per head including a bottle of good sangiovese and drinks to start.