Monday, July 26, 2010

Il Posto Paddington

You may remember just a couple of posts ago, I was raving about the pizza at Beccofino in Teneriffe. Pizza, as you may well already know, is a bit of an obsession in my house.

Everyone loves (good) pizza, so luckily for me, (aside from steak) it is LITERALLY the only thing C is good at cooking. Might I add, he does a damn fine job. In fact I've always been lucky in the pizza stakes, growing up, my Dad was a pizza maestro (who inspired C). I was blessed to have access to this great food, but it also came in the form of a curse as I'm now fairly picky about my pizza and will never be satisfied with a chain pizza. It is never cheaper Tuesday for $4.9 for me.

Once people find out that I'm one of those- *narrows eyes* food bloggers they ask for restaurant recommendations. Oh the pressure!! One of the most frequently asked about categories of food is pizza. I usually say Beccofino, but just recently, there have been another couple of pizza restaurants I visited in the aim of finding Brisbane's best pizza. I'll bring these reviews to you over the next couple of weeks!

Il Posto is a newish restaurant situated on LaTrobe Terrace in Paddington. To be even more precise it is placed at the top of the Paddington Woolworths complex across from Spoon Deli. I had seen Il Posto, and was a little skeptical, (perhaps unfairly so) because I remember being far from impressed when eating in the previous establishments that existed on the site. Luckily a friend of mine encouraged me to go and grab some pizza telling me she'd heard it was good and is located quite conveniently for me.

The first couple of times I ventured up the hill, I had ordered take away so thought I should wait until I visited and ate in to blog about the experience. Hint Hint... Obviously, if I kept going back for more, it was totally good pizza.

C's mum, brother L and sister J were down for the weekend, as was one of my friends, Possum. You may have heard of Possum before as she is responsible for writing a G.G. Guest blog post about what it is like to dine with a food blogger. You should read it, because it's pretty hilarious. We wanted to go somewhere close with simple but good food, and when C's brother, L suggested Il Posto, I jumped at the chance to dine in.

I phoned ahead to book, but it turns out they don't take bookings. As there were six of us and it was a Friday night, the guy that answered the phone said there would 'most probably' be a table for us if we turned up at 6:45 p.m. rather than the 8:00 p.m. time I had suggested. Even though I knew it would be a stretch to arrive by then, I decided it was better than waiting around until late to get a table.

We arrived in dribs and drabs between 6:55 and 7:20 and the wait staff didn't seem to mind too much. They offered us a campari based aperitif which Poss and I accepted gratefully whilst waiting for the others. Unfortunately I only have two really dark photos of the food, as I became too engrossed with eating, and it really was too dark, even to take a shitty iPhone shot.

Once everyone finally arrived, it didn't take long to order as we were all thinking along the same lines, everyone wanted pizza. We decided on the special of the night which was Porchetta - around $21, a margherita $18.5, a patata $18.5 and proscuitto di parma $21.5. For good measure, we also ordered an antipasto plate $23.5 and a calamari fritti con rucola (calamari with rocket and lemon) for $22.5 and a special of sardines. You'll notice that I ordered calamari, proscuitto pizza and patata pizza which were similar to the pizzas at Beccofino, not only because I love these pizzas, but also for a fair comparison.

The calamari arrived first and was rather good. It was lightly battered, crunchy and the tentacles were, for the most part, easy to bite through. The lemon added bite and the rocket was fresh and peppery. There were a few pieces that had a more rubbery texture, but overall this dish was good.

The antipasto plate was generally ok, although nothing really caught my attention.

I'm glad we did order these antipasti plate because we waited in excess of forty five minutes for the pizzas to arrive. Now, the restaurant was packed full, but in my books, almost an hour is too long to wait. That being said, during this time, the wait staff were attentive, letting us know that the food 'wouldn't be too far away' and kept the water and the wine coming.

The wine list is concise and includes both Aussie and Italian wines ranging from $39 to $69. I chose to keep drinking campari, and then vodka afterwards, as I never like to mix spirits with wine. I've learned that the hard way.

One of Il Posto's creators Tony D'Alessandro did time at Beccofino in Teneriffe, and to be honest, it really shows. The restaurant has a very Beccofino inspired feel, but it also obvious that there are other influences at play. The other half of the duo is Glen Haffenden and together, they have created a Melbournesque feel that is not commonly seen in Brisbane's western suburbs.

By the time the pizza had arrived, we were starving and cursing the fact we had only ordered 4 pizzas between six people. With the antipasti, normally this would be enough, but L and C eat quite A LOT of pizza!!

The first pizza out was the margherita. The base was thin and crisp, and the topping was sparse, just like it should be. The mozzarella didn't seem to be as 'soft' as it could have been, and I would have liked some extra basil, but never the less, this pizza was simple and good.

One of the bianche (without tomato sugo/sauce on the base) pizza we ordered was the patata. The Patata has bocconcini, potato, rosemary and pancetta and is absolutely delicious. Bianche pizzas can often feel much heavier than their napoli based cousins, but this managed to remain light whilst bringing the richeness and flavour packed punch of potato and pancetta. I really wanted more, but unfortunately this disappeared right off the plate.

The proscuitto pizza was next, also sparsely decorated with silky proscuitto. The base was thin and crispy, and whilst there was possibly a little too much bocconcini, this pizza was still worthy of a pretty good rating. More proscuitto and less cheese could have perfected this promising pizza.

Without a doubt, the star of the night was the Porchetta pizza. I know- right! Porchetta on a pizza. Perhaps I'm getting a little obsessed with Porchetta you wonder??! I've also wondered the same thing. Maybe I am, but to be honest, I don't really care. It was without a doubt, the best bianche pizza I have had in my life. The base was perfectly thin, the cheese was evenly spread and the porchetta, oh the porchetta, was moist, flavoursome and thinly and delightfully placed perfectly all over this wonderful creation. I was totally selfish and took two and a half pieces of this pizza but could have happily moved tables, sat by myself with the porchetta pizza and devoured the whole delicious lot. Seriously, next time I order, which may be tonight, I'm going to hope that they will recreate this special for me. I'm so sad it is not on the menu full time, but maybe with some demand, they will make it available all the time. People go and order some Porchetta Pizza Please!

Overall this was a pleasant dining experience. The service was slow but polite and although I didn't try anything from the main or dessert menus, the pizzas were consistently good.
It's hard to top the pizza at Beccofino, and whilst Il Posto didn't manage to do this across the board on this occasion, perhaps in the future they will. The pizzas show promise and the place has brought a little pizza pizazz to Paddington. Long live the Porchetta Pizza.

When to go: When you want a rich delicious porchetta pizza- Either early or late depending if you like to wait.

So tell me readers- have you ever had a Porchetta Pizza? What was it like?

Il Posto
107 LaTrobe Terrace
Paddington QLD 4064
07 3367 3111
(Pizza, Pasta and Contorni Dishes are available to takeaway)
Il Posto on Urbanspoon

1 fabulous comments:

delicieux said...

I will have to check out Il Posto next time my boyfriend and I are looking for a good pizza. Thanks for the suggestion :)

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