Are you craving Italian food? Or is it your favourite cuisine you would always look for wherever you go? If that’s the case, it is no surprise because, like you, there are thousands of people who fell in love with Italian cooking. And the number keeps growing!
Take a closer look at every place you go. The chances are that you would find an Italian restaurant patronised by locals or tourists. Because who wouldn’t? Pizza, tiramisu, lasagne, ravioli, risotto, polenta—you name it! Italians have a lot of dishes to offer that will fill our palate with delightful flavour profiles and addicting textures. All this will leave us wanting more. So, whenever you find yourself wandering the streets of Victoria, don’t miss the chance to visit one of the best Italian restaurants in Melbourne and enjoy excellent meals.
We made a list of must-try Italian meals you should try if you visit Melbourne. Stay tuned as we break down why these dishes are a must-have.
They say the best pizza comes from Italy. But, if you don’t get the chance to travel to Italy, you still can enjoy an authentic Italian-style pie. Pizza has been around outside Italy for years, and finding one that tastes exactly like the ones in the country would not be that hard. Although the cuisines of other countries influence pizza, you can find gourmet pizzas in the right pizzerias.
Moreover, pizza is one of Italy’s symbols of national unity and the gastronomic flag of the country. And that is why when it comes to Italian cuisine, pizza of different kinds is easily associated. Thus, you wouldn’t want to skip this dish because it embodies the Italian culture as a whole and the experience of travelling to Italy’s endless coastline and mountainous terrain.
Fresh pasta with Bolognese sauce is the base of the ever-famous lasagne, a cornerstone of the best Italian food. This dish is a must-try because of the ragù, a sauce made from a combination of finely chopped celery, onion, carrot, and beef, or sometimes a small addition of pork and contracted tomato sauce. These are cooked in slow heat for an hour or more until the flavours meld. Freshly made rectangular pasta is boiled, drained, and layered with the ragù, béchamel, and grated Parmesan cheese to assemble the Lasagna.
How many layers you want your lasagne to be is up to you. Nonetheless, it will be as mouth-watering and flavourful with the bursting flavours from the sauce, pasta, and cheese! It is worth drooling over, if you like to put it that way.
Let’s all thank Rome for putting spaghetti and carbonara into Italy’s endless list of gastronomic options. Everyone around the world enjoys this simple yet hearty meal and can’t get enough of it. In fact, many pasta dishes use spaghetti because it is considered the quintessential pasta. Who could resist the bacon, egg yolk, milk cream, and cheese in one dish? Probably, no one.
Even if the carbonara recipe has changed over the years, it remains one of the most recreated dishes with the addition of guanciale instead of classic bacon, egg yolk, and cheese in favour of the taste and preparation. When you visit an Italian restaurant in Melbourne, order spaghetti carbonara and enjoy yourself with this delicious dish that is truly Italian.
Pesto is the true flag bearer of Cinque Terre and the Italian Riveria. Although its origin is uncertain and confused, like almost every recipe, this basil sauce will certainly bring every gastronomic experience to another level.
Fast-forward to today, pesto is easy to make, using Ligurian basil, Vessalico garlic, Italian pine nuts, grated Parmesan cheese, Sardinian pecorino cheese, extra virgin olive oil, and coarse salt. Throw all these ingredients into a mortar and pestle, and you have the well-loved pesto. There are different ways you can use this green sauce. But in Italy, pesto is used as the main condiment of pasta.
Every region in Italy has its version of stuffed pasta, which is why it is very varied depending on where it is from. From Northern Italy down to Sicily, there is no region left behind when it comes to stuffed pasta recipes. There are three most renowned pasta wrapping that you will surely recognise easily—ravioli, tortellini, and agnolotti.
Ravioli is made up of meat cooked in tomato sauce with char and edible borage. This kind of pasta wrapping was from Liguria, a region in Italy where recipe books for ravioli with fish filling were found at the end of the nineteenth century. Interesting, isn’t it?
On the other hand, agnolotti came from the region of Piedmont in northwest Italy. The stuffed pasta comprises mixed meats and vegetables and is served seasoned with roast sauce, butter, and sage.
It is undecided where tortellini was from because it has long been disputed between Modena and Bologna. But, its pork filling with raw ham and mortadella sausage in meat broth will quickly become a favourite.
Rice is a prominent food in the Northern portion of Italy. It made its appearance in Sicily and other southern regions when the Arabs brought rice down around the thirteenth century. The most known risotto is the Milanese risotto, which is yellow because of saffron and the refined butter left to the wave after creaming. However, Milan is not the only place that is fond of rice.
Veneto has rice with Risi and Bisi peas, Venice has the risotto primavera with vegetables, and Puglia has Tiella of rice, mussels, potatoes, and more! The next time you visit the best Italian restaurant in Melbourne, risotto is highly recommended. Try this warm rice with various seasonings, ingredients, and flavours!