Dinner at The Italian

On the first night of my visit I was invited to a dinner at The Italian, a high end Italian restaurant at the Eastern end of Collins Street. The restaurant is very stylish, with a split level design. The entrance is at the lowest level, which steps up to the main dining area. There is another private dining area on the mezzanine floor.

Like most of the high end restaurants in Melbourne, the wait staff are all carefully chosen to fit the venue - they call it casting. We had a very friendly waiter, but he was horrified by how we were ordering the dinner - everything to share - Chinese Style. He came around to it eventually. 

First were the starters - Prosciuto with Rockmelon, Deep Fried Calamari, and Poached Eggs on a bed of Asparagus.

Everything was delicious - especially the calamari which was done just right.

Next I had the Roasted Tomato Soup with Deep Fried Salt Cod. It was very good, but quite filling as there was a lot of barley in the soup. I ended up sharing the soup as I couldn't possibly finish it.

Next came the mains - Roasted Ribeye Steak, Roasted Duck, Spaghetti with Prawns, Raviolli with Rabbit and Pappardelle with Roast Duck. Again, everything was superb - especially the Ribeye Steak which was tender and full of flavour. The Roasted Duck came a close second, and the Raviolli which was very interesting with a lot of complex flavours. Even the spaghetti which is a simple dish is elevated by the taste of the sauce, which is clean but at the same time complex.  

Finally came the desserts - Pannacotta with Dark Cherry Sauce, Ricotta Ice Cream with Candied Orange Peels, and Creme Caramel with Rubard Sauce.

All in all it was a wonderfull meal, and I would go back for the Ribeye Steak alone. Melbourne food certainly doesn't disappoint.


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