Jax & Jill make the rounds of Italian: Sydney, Australia

There’s no such thing as too much good Italian food! The great thing about it is you can have a completely different experience from one restaurant to the next. I love that! And that’s exactly what we did 🙂

Dodging Puddles, Paddington

This was the coolest experience! It was a temporary restaurant, I tried looking for it on the internet recently and couldn’t find it, I’m not sure if that means it has gone. Anyway, it was in what looked like an old night club. I didn’t get a pic of it, but when you went into the toilet they had the old urinal full of bottles of wine, which looked really cool (though describing it now, does not sound that way)

What we had

  • Garlic bread: the garlic bread was to die for! Man I love good garlic bread, and I think some of the best ever comes out of Australia.
  • Pane fritto, anchovy: this yummy little crusty bread stick with anchovy
  • Insalata rinforzo: a cauliflower salad that’s seasoned with olives, peppers olive oil and vinegar.
  • Fave: light, seasoned beans. Probably my least favourite dish but still yum
  • Ceci e tria: a pasta with chickpeas. I’d never had something like this before and it was really good. A very light pasta, with the nuttiness of the chickpeas and then a crispy crunch. Delicious
  • Tonnarelli, prawn, radiccho: also nice and light, not too much radiccho which can be a bit bitter.
  • Snapper al cartoccio: so well cooked. I love it when they are cooked al cartoccio ie in a paper bag, it makes it so delicate and tender.
  • Roast potatoes: as expected, these were amazing. Not sure how we fit in anymore carbs, but we did!

This place was great. I’m not sure who was doing it, but I’d definitely go to anything else they do if I found out.

Totti’s, North Bondi

I really love how Sydney is transforming some of the old pubs to include great restaurants in the upstairs space. It’s got to be good for the pub’s business and the buildings are gorgeous so I am glad they aren’t just being converted to new apartment buildings.

Totti is beautful. So light and bright, it brings the feeling of outdoors indoors. What we had:

  • Woodfired bread with toppings: oh my god this was amazing. The bread was perfection and then you loaded your own toppings on to make it amazing!!! I honestly could have just kept eating this! For toppings we chose burrata, proscuitto, ndjuja, mushrooms, sardines, but there are so many options.
  • Purple beetroot, blood orange, fennel & pistachio salad: really yum. The acid of the salad went perfectly with everything else.
  • Lamb ragu with pappardelle: i’m not normally a big lamb person, but this was delicious. I think heavy flavour dishes are good with a meal like this because you’re having small amounts. It would probably be overwhelming as a sole dish.
  • Linguine, spinach & herb, walnut pangrattato: wow! a pile of green, and it tasted so good. Everything was working for this pasta dish
  • Baked eggplant, chilli & pangrattato: can you ever go wrong with baked eggplant?
  • Corn fregola & chilli: this was really different. Deliciously, different.
Look at that bread!
Pasta & veg yum!

I would go back to this place for sure. There’s also a lovely bar across the road to have a drink in after.

Beppi’s, Surry Hills

Beppi’s in the oldest Italian restaurant in Sydney, and they keep that old school experience from the moment you walk in the door. The restaurant is a little rabbit warren of small rooms, which adds to the the cosy, intimate feel to the restaurant. The service is old school service, attentive and friendly adding to the charm. I don’t think I am used to that level of attentiveness, I find it weird to get used, to but still kind of charming.

With the old school theme, the menu was a traditional Italian meal.

  • Burrata & heirloom tomatoes: I just can’t resist this dish. It’s all about the quality of the ingredients, particularly the tomato, and they definitely delivered on this.
  • Zucchini flowers: lightly fried and always a delight. I think I like them for the look more than the taste, but I can’t resist these either.
  • Giant spinach & pumpkin raviloi: just really nice pasta. For those who need to know, they can do some of their pasta dishes as gluten free as ell (though they do not make that pasta inhouse).
  • Veal: there’s not many places that you have a veal dish, but a classic Italian is one of those places. It was simply done with a lemon and butter sauce.

If you’re looking for a classic experience, that

So, that was our Italian endeavors! Lots of deliciousness and as I said before all 3 felt like really different experiences. Not just from the feel of the restaurants, but how they put the flavours together. All done while staying clear, they were Italian.

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