After a nice long warm day walking around Melbourne, we stopped off for a few drinks on a mini bar crawl along Fitzroy Street, down from The Belgian Beer Garden before riding on the oldest rollercoaster in the world at Luna Park, St Kilda.
We wanted to go for a special meal on our last evening so we headed to Cicciolina on busy Acland Street as it had been recommended to us by my boyfriends family friends who live in the area. Apparently it is a favourite of foodie Melbourne residents so we had to try it out.
Cicciliona is a small, cosy, dimly lit and very atmospheric up market Italian restaurant. When we arrived there was a 30 minute wait so we decided to put our names down and have a drink in the adjoining bar at the back. I walked in and it was very dimly lit – it reminded me of a New York bar. A couple of the party were very hungry so we decided to order our starters in the bar from the special bar menu, found on the chalk board above the bar.
We had Calimari, Meatballs and Deep Fried Risotto Balls. All of the dishes were delicious – tapas portions and a perfect way to start the meal. However, I didn’t eat too much because I didn’t want to spoil my appetite for my main meal.
We were called to our table 45 minutes later and were served by a very witty waitress who joked about throwing my brother out when he knocked his beer all over the table. Despite this minor blip, all three waiters that served us were extremely attentive and friendly.
One waiter excelled himself at describing the dishes. One of the party was asking for his recommendation on what was best between two dishes and the way he described them looked like he was in a dream world where he was eating the dishes himself. In the end, he won our friend over with his description of the Steak.
I opted for the Lamb Loin with Cauliflower Puree, Tenderstem Broccoli, Flaked Almonds and an Olive Tapenade. The Lamb was moist, pink and cooked perfectly. I forgot that the ‘mash’ was Cauliflower Puree and was pleasantly surprised when I took the mouthful.
My boyfriend ordered the Pasta with Prawns and Chilli, which was a simple but refreshing dish. I can never get enough Pasta but never normally order it in a restaurant because of fear of paying through the roof for a dish that I could do just as well. I knew that it wouldn’t be the case here however because having spied on the food before we ordered, I knew it would be done well (and better than I could do!)
I also tried the Wild Mushroom Risotto with Truffle Oil, which was divine. Due to the starters in the bar before hand, my brother’s girlfriend had trouble finishing it off so I stuck my fork in and gave it a good go. She mentioned that it was extremely garlicky and it was but the Truffle Oil won out on the taste front.
Awful of me but I can’t remember what my brother had – I did take a picture but I didn’t try it because he wolfed it down in a couple of minutes but it sure did look delicious.
The Steak was, in the end, to DIE for. The waiters description was bang on the nose and it literally melted in your mouth as soon as it hit the tongue. I have recently stopped ordering Steak in restaurants because of repeated disappointment but I would order this dish any day.
Too full for pudding, it was to be an ice cold pudding for me again so we headed to a local Gelato cafe, 7 Apples afterwards before retreating to bed before the early trip back to Perth in the morning.
130 Acland St
Melbourne VIC 3182, Australia
(03) 9525 3333