• Cirelli & Co (Brunswick West)

I love travelling to exotic locations. And whenever I am overseas, the local cuisine is a must try. As a vegetarian, Italy is a dream – fresh produce, rich flavours, and heaps of veggies. Cirelli & Co recently invited me to try their vegetarian menu. My taste buds were happily transported to the land of the boot.

This little eatery on Albion Road has fast become a favourite with locals. Bakery, come pizzeria, come pasta bar, come beer garden – there is something to please the whole family. 

We started in the garden, watching the sun set and nursing Italian beers.  I loved the Italian pale ale: Collesi Bionda. This was grainy and full of flavour. Unpasturised.

The pilsner was more refreshing, and Mark preferred this one, whilst I preferred the pale ale. This was cloudy but light. 

The mushroom quiche was a modern take of the old favourite with no crust, but beautifully presented in a sea of leek potato cream. The cream was a fine, smooth puree (with the consistency between a soup and a paste). The leek was blended in to add taste rather than texture. Truffle obtruded the quiche’s finely chopped mushrooms. I loved the creative concept, the fancy presentation, and the well-balanced flavours to this dish. This was my favourite of the meal.

The gnocchi was equally a fresh take on a much-loved staple. The gnocchi was moist and soft, like it should be, but made with purple sweet potato to give it a sweet taste and purple tinge. The sauce on this was a pumpkin cream. Pine nuts, spinach, and voila, a vegan dish to tempt any tastes.

This was subtly flavoured compared to the other dishes and a pleasant balance to the meal. I appreciated the creativity, and that this main pasta dish was highlighted as vegan.

The Campagnola Pizza is Cirelli & Co’s signature vegetarian pizza. It can also be made vegan. Traditional base, bubbly charred crust, flavoursome roasted veggies (especially the strips of red capsicum), mozzarella, tomato… this is less about creativity and more about a classic done well. 

The Panna Cotta Agli Agrum was Mark’s favourite.  The bright yellow lemon sauce was reminiscent of child-hood ice-cream topping, but this one was sweet and tart and distinctly lemon. A thin dehydrated slice of orange garnished the top. The actual panna cotta was so creamy and rich. The flavours of the panna cotta were overwhelmed by the lemon sauce and orange slice, but it was the smooth, creamy texture that saw us gobbling up every last mouthful. 

Whilst on Albion Road, the back courtyard is peaceful and suburban. Many locals dropped in for a beer and shared pizzas. While the front is slightly more formal with mood lighting and a bakery display lining one wall (P.S. we got to take a loaf of bread home, and that was equally delicious – strong crust, fluffy white with a hint of salt). The staff were extremely friendly, casual and helpful. If we lived locally, we would join the crowds and be here weekly too. 

Cirelli & Co
454 Albion Street
Brunswick West 3055
03 9386 8084

Cirelli & Co Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato