My first impression of Tipo 00? Rather strange. They have a great and far-reaching reputation as an amazing Italian restaurant that everyone loves, so it went to the top of my list very quickly. However, I wasn’t able to get a table last year. I tried a walk-in on a Friday night for 2 people (lol, so you can already guess what happened) and was told the wait exceeded two hours, so they didn’t put us on the waiting list. They were slightly abrupt about it in my eyes, and that’s why I found it odd that time. Probably not really that abrupt, but rather, just plain speaking.
Fast forward and I attempted to call to make a booking for one person on a Thursday night this year, and they told me that I should be able to walk-in for it rather than place a reservation for me. I’ve not been declined a 1 person reservation before, though, I’ve also never done it over the phone (though I was about to shortly for Minamishima), so I found that odd. Maybe they were afraid of holding a single spot since 2+ diners were far more common? Perhaps also they didn’t want a potential no show? I figure that they preferred the “security” of a 2+ person booking, which is why they recommended the walk-in, which makes total sense to me since I’ve read about the awfulness of no-shows.
Anyway, so finally the time came for me to see if I could get a table here. I actually forgot that they weren’t located on Flinders Lane; I had just had some coffee at Brother Baba Budan during closing time, and then wasted 30 minutes before attempting to find the restaurant. It turns out they’re right next door to the cafe! So I walked all the way back, and made my enquiry at 6pm. Already the place was full, and for me to get a table for one, would be a one hour wait. Sure, I was happy to wait. I just couldn’t believe they filled up so quickly! No other city seems to have a full house by 6pm. So, I put down my name and number, then took a walk. At 6:30, I got my call. Yay, a table was available! So I teleported back and finally got my seat.
What a nice view. It was raining outside, since the week of flooding had just subsided. I was hungry, but had no idea what I wanted. Lucky there was a chef’s menu, so I left my meal in their hands.
Bread with ricotta and basil oil. A nice starter, but I was careful to eat the bread slowly since I knew more food was coming. That ricotta was pretty good, but I think I still miss the really nice smelling olive oil from Rosetta.
An arancini ball! How cute! But I still don’t like rice. I guess it’s something that will stick with me for the rest of my life.
There was actually a couple sitting on the other side of my corner, and they mentioned that when they chose the chef’s menu, they were given the ox tongue. That was cool, I think they weren’t thrilled by it but I would have loved it! Alas, no tongue for me. Instead I got other goodies.
House cured ocean trout with black garlic and broad beans. Yeah this was so yummy! The trout was very melt in the mouth and I love broad beans! The garlic was lovely and I had to suffer through garlic breath that night… but it was worth it!
White asparagus!!! And there was a little green asparagus behind it. Not only was this pretty, but it also tasted really good and had a great aroma of truffle oil!
And everyone’s favourite, the squid ink pasta with squid, roe and bottarga! Wow, the textures of squid and pasta were distinctly different here, whereas I think at Rosetta they were more similar. The pasta here was “just cooked” al dente, so a little harder than what I was expecting, but still cooked. This was tasty, though, to be really, really honest… I think I liked the double sided clam pasta I got at Lulu La Delizia more. In fact, I was so surprised that my little local Perth restaurant could actually make such strong headlines and be on par with a top Melbourne pasta bar! I think I just liked the bolder flavours and the ever so marginally more cooked, but definitely still al dente texture better at Lulu’s.
Help, carb overload! Rabbit gnocchi with olives. That’s a huge serve! So generous! I honestly couldn’t finish this one because it felt like a full sized meal in itself; I had to look around to confirm that this was actually a smaller version for the chef’s menu. Wow! The rabbit was so incredibly tender. Also seemed to have a bit more fat on it, to the point where I was seriously wondering if it was actually chicken (since I have previously cooked rabbit and it tasted like chicken lol).
Wow, and then two desserts came out at once! Woah. I had a new couple sitting across from me now, and the guy said I looked like I might not be able to eat the chocolate dessert and offered to eat it for me… nope, it was all mine! The first was a honey panna cotta with watermelon, which was deliciously wobbly. It was light, and I really liked it, but as soon as I moved onto the tipomisu, I realised that the chocolate dessert was way tastier. I was so full, but the more I ate it, the faster I ate it! It was creamy, chocolatey, coffee, and salted caramelly! It was so good!!! While I thought I had gotten over trying out tiramisus at Italian restaurants, this one’s proved me wrong.
The service during my meal was great, and the staff were all really friendly – so were the customers! It was interesting the difference between being not a customer and being a customer, I felt that the restaurant had changed completely once you were seated. There was a lot of food given, and leaving several pieces of gnocchi behind was a good choice. Since it’d been a long time since I’ve had to eat like a true monster on holidays, my tummy was sore from all that food! It was so enjoyable though!