One of the perks of living regionally and attending conferences is...
accommodation in Melbourne for the night!!
My colleague and I took this as an opportunity to check out High st, Thornbury.
Trying to navigate with google maps, we found cafe cinquecento
A fairly large, open spaced establishment fit with their own pizza oven. The walls are bare, red brick and there is a cute little fiat in the entrance. The entrees are more than your standard bruschetta and garlic bread, we ordered calamari in a tomato and garlic sauce and was cooked to perfection. Not stringy or chewy, perfectly soft!
The menu is the type, where you are stuck between a couple of options for mains... I went for the veal. Delicious layers of juicy veal, with a tomato sauce and eggplant on top. Each mouth was exciting, because there were many layers of flavour, every mouthful was different.
What I liked about this place, is the attention from the staff, even the chef came out to brag about the pan fried spaghetti used as decoration.
However... I know that the Italians are big on the slow food movement, eating their main meal over a couple of hours.. and this place takes on that feeling of slowness with food service.
It took longer than expected to bring out each dish, that unless you are with your best friend, you will quickly run out of interesting dinner topics...
What made it more frustrating, was being able to see the chefs in the kitchen discussing something of importance, but dammit i wanted my veal!