• Itali.Co (St Kilda)

Itali.Co opened in 2013, dishing up some fine and traditional Italian fare with a hint of Melbourne swank and friendliness (see my previous post).  Two years on, Chef and co-owner, Lino Maglione is still in the kitchen, but the pizza this time focus on Neapolitan pizza with a healthy twist.

“I spend a lot of time focusing on the production process,” Maglione explains, “as it is often overlooked and yet a critical element to great pizza.”

He aims for pizzas that are lighter and healthier, without compromising the traditional Italian flavours.  Kamut flour is optional in every base, a higher protein flour that also holds minerals and amino acids and is overall healthier.

We had been invited for a Tuesday night dinner.  It was livelier than expected, buzzing even though only half full.  The layout with the angular space, glass walls and clean lines is modern and attractive.

We nibbled on olives whilst waiting for appetisers.  The black ones were small and salty, whilst the green were juicy and flavoured with rosemary.

Arancini is served with tomato.  The saltiness of the cheese was apparent.  The arancini were herbed and held a lovely texture of light risotto (which formed without being heavy or gluggy) and a crunchy shell.  Crispy fried sage garnished.

The Gorganzola pizza showed a floppy base, thin, blackened and authentic.  The gorganzola was subtle and the interesting addition of almonds surprisingly worked well against the creaminess.

The Dell'Orto pizza was layered with sugo flavoured with white wine.  The toppings were moist with a variety of veggies. The eggplant was slightly underdone.  Again, the base was authentic, tasty and well-done.

Chips accompanied our meal. The potato was firm and lightly fried.  The paprika mayo with its citrusy tang would be the reason to order these.

Don’t be fooled, the Italian hot chocolate is as rich as any dessert.  It was described to us as a “little cup of happiness.”  It was more like a hot chocolate fudge pudding – the saucy part at least.

The pizzas are good.  Perhaps the pizzas are not as flavoursome as my favourite Fratellino’s (yes, I am still addicted to that place years on) but there is something more special about Itali.Co.  The atmosphere is that of a fun night out.  The service is friendly, professional and makes you feel like tonight is a special occasion.

173 Barkly St
St Kilda 3182
03 9537 5300
Click to add a blog post for Itali.co on Zomato