- Garlic Bread
- Lamb Ragu Penne
- Pescatore Pizza
It was off to a great start with the Garlic Bread and Bruschetta. Toasted in the wood-fired oven, they universally exhibited a nice crisp and a satisfying crunch with each bite. The garlic butter was exceptionally flavoursome and aromatic, while the salsa topping the bruschetta was exceptionally fresh, with a light and slightly tangy dressing which enhanced the fresh ingreidents.
We thoroughly enjoyed the Lamb Ragu Penne. Slow cooked in a rich tomato and red wine base, the lamb shoulder was braised to such tenderness which simply melted in your mouth. The lamb flavour was prominent and forward, though inhibited much of the rosemary and red wine aroma throughout. Accompanying the fragrant and appetising sauce was the penne, which unfortunately was cooked much too soft on this occasion and made for a slightly ‘mushy’ experience.
We concluded our Italian feast with the Sfinge and the Homemade Tiramisu, both spectacular and indulgent in their own right.
The Sfinge, Italian donuts, were simple yet outstanding. The golden brown, crispy outer was dusted with icing sugar, with a sweet chocoalte and nutella sauce drizzled on top. Enclosed within the sweet outer shell, we found some of the spongiest, softest donut dough we’ve ever come across, with just the right consistency and texture that wasn’t too dry, airy, nor hard. These were quite literally THE most perfect specimen of donuts we’ve ever had.
The Tiramisu was perhaps just as delicious, though arguably less jawdropping than the donuts. Within the tall glass, we found flavourful layers of soft, spongey lady fingers that interlaced with an abundace of silky smooth and delicate mascapone. The bold coffee flavour was well balanced by the sweetness of the cocoa powder dusted throughout, while the whole strawberry provided a refreshing tartness. A rich, delicious dessert that definitely didn’t disappoint.
The Pescatore Pizza unfortunately didn’t impress. Despite being baked in a wood-fire oven, the dough wasn’t particularly fragrant, nor did it have the ‘puffy’ Neapolitan crust that we were looking for. We felt that the tomato base was muted in flavour, lacking in the richness and aroma. The cheese didn’t do much to remedy the situation, being a cheap mozarella that didn’t carry much depth. The seafood topping the pizza was neither fresh nor flavourful. All in all, probably a passable, though the most disappointing dish of the meal.
With a refreshing new look and an absolutely stunning re-design, Piccolino is but a new kid on the block. The tried and true Italian recipes handed down from generations generated some spectacular results.
While the execution was far from perfect, the majority of what we did sample were hands down some of most delicious renditions we’ve come across, Melbourne or internationally.
Would Penguin Eat Again?
Sure. A stunning venue with hearty Italian food to match, count me in for more!
Penguineats would like to thank Piccolino and Milk Bottle Projects for inviting us.