Primo, pasta, pizza… we can’t get enough of Perth’s best Italian food. Buon appetito!
Acqua e Sale
With a distinctly Sardinian influence, Acqua e Sale’s menu is both exciting and comforting: the familiar sight of salt and pepper calamari, paired with spicy squid ink aioli. House-made gnocchetti with saffron, sausage, and D.O.P pecorino, or culurgiones stuffed with potato, pecorino and mint… we haven’t even got started with the pizzas, or the desserts, with include traditional seadas – house made Sardinian fried pastry, topped with sheep’s ricotta, orange zest, honey and walnuts. Who needs a trip to Italy when you’ve got Acqua e Sale?
391 Fitzgerald Street, North Perth
Now run by the fourth generation of Pizzales, Capri is standing strong against the changing whims of fashions. Harking back to the hustle and bustle of 50s Freo, with an unpretentious, low-key menu, interior and service punctuated by old-school touches like complimentary soup and bread.
21 South Terrace, Fremantle
Speaking of tradition, you can’t pass up an opportunity to dine at Galileo. Counter to the fashion for casual-formal dining and industrial-inspired fit outs, Galileo’s decor and brigade of waistcoated staff are untouched by passing trends. Similarly, the menu is steadfastly classic, with dishes like veal meatballs in white wine, bucatini with lamb ragu, or pansotti with collard greens and walnuts.
199 Onslow Road, Shenton Park
This list would hardly be complete without at least one wall-to-wall mural, right? Luckily, Ischia’s dining room features its island namesake, complete with azure water and volcanic cliffs. Their menu traverses both land and sea, with plenty of crowd-pleasers: grilled octopus served atop a tomato salad, homemade lasagne with slow-cooked ragu, scaloppine and cotoletta, and of course, wood fired pizzas. A stalwart of the Highgate dining scene for years, it’s been tried, tested and most importantly, beloved by all.
500 Beaufort St, Highgate
Lulu La Delizia
Simple but luxurious. Comforting but refined. Lulu La Delizia strikes the perfect balance between the high-brow, cheffy approach that sets a restaurant apart, and the comfort factor that keeps everyone coming back. Their restrained, single page menu is accentuated with hard-to-pass up specials that showcase local and seasonal produce.
Forrest Walk, 5/97 Rokeby Road, Subiaco
It could be said that No Mafia’s specialty is “Stuff That Goes Really Well With a Glass of Wine”. Which, for the record, is a category we’re well and truly on board for. With its initial, compact location it had all the drop-on-by, buzzy vibes and share plates of a small bar, but the move up the road to larger premises has allowed for an expanded menu that includes house-made pasta. And is more pasta ever a bad thing? We think not.
252 William St, Northbridge
Nestled in between Leederville and Mount Hawthorn, Pappagallo has become one of our favourite go-tos over the years. Whether its their crispy-based pizzas or luscious pastas, we keep coming back. If you’re feeling extravagant, add on a burrata to your pizza… but whatever you do, leave room for a cannoli.
250 Oxford Street, Leederville
With a flair for showing off WA’s best produce, Post’s menu delicately balances between Old-World-Italian and Perth-right-now – while reflecting the restrained refinement of the State Buildings, of course. Stop by for mouth-watering after-work antipasti (buffalo mozzarella with grilled figs, or a rosy plate of beef carpaccio?), or delve into their pasta offerings – think rigatoni with guanciale, chilli and tomato, or casarecce with zucchini, lemon and basil.
State Builings, 1 Cathedral Ave, Perth
Posto Matto may not be reinventing the wheel, but they sure make their wheel look tasty. Classic pasta (and pizza!) with a twist is their MO, so you can look forward to dishes like garganelli with octopus sugo, or maltagliati with confit duck, mushroom, kale and duck egg. Hopefully you’ve left enough room after the stuzzichini of lamb ribs, mussels and prosciutto, though…
211 Main St, Osborne Park
All hotel dining is not created equal, and the proof is in the proverbial pudding when it comes to Santini. The menu manages to balance its accessibility with a focus and attention to detail that ensures any less-favourable hotel dining cliches are satisfyingly avoided, while its stylish fit-out transitions effortlessly from business-friendly long lunch to dimly-lit dinner service.
QT, 133 Murray Street, Perth
Shadow Wine Bar
As seductive and intriguing as an Italian film star, Shadow Wine Bar’s dimly-lit dining room is the perfect setting for your next date night. Share a plate of veal carpaccio, oysters with lemon myrtle or arancini with smoked leek aioli before diving into a plate of veal cotoletta with cabbage, leek and brown butter, or resisting the urge to Lady and the Tramp a bowl of prawn spaghettini. Is it us, or is it getting a bit warm in here?!
214 William Street, Northbridge
Highgate’s party paradise has had a coming of age in recent times, and with its reinvigorated menu, we reckon the dance floor has some pretty strong competition. Don’t worry, you can still get your mitts on those Neapolitan-style pizzas, but you’ll also find it hard to resist the next-level share plates. Showing more than a nod to our enviable coast, you can expect to find plenty of seafood, with dishes like monk fish “porchetta”, or tuna tartare cannoli.
446 Beaufort Street, Mount Lawley
Is there any greater shrine to Perth’s favourite cocktail than the glowing, orange monument that is Spritz Spizzicheria? Their menu takes you from a long afternoon of cocktails and nibbles to more substantial pasta, pizza and mains – or take advantage of their aperativo time: two hours of drinking and snacking specials (Italy’s best recent export?). We’re starting to think Mount Hawthorn is punching above its weight in culinary options.
148 Scarborough Beach Road, Mt Hawthorn
Header image: Lulu La Delizia