Monday night is the new Friday night. Or at least that seems to be the pattern in my social life of late, for the previous five Monday nights at least. The Monday before last saw a few of Sydney’s finest
We are lucky enough to be served tasting plates of all the entrée dishes, a main of our choice and desserts to share. First up was the salami, goats’ cheese and parmigiano gnocco fritto, a really lovely way to start the meal. I loved cutting into the crisp, deep fried crust to reveal the oozy melted cheese inside and happily polished off Karen’s portion too since she’s not a fan of cheese.
The Savoy cabbage, pine nut, raisin, pecorino and pangrattato insalata was like the most delicious coleslaw I’d ever tasted. The textures were fantastic – the crunch of pine nuts and bread crumbs with the burst of sweetness from the raisins worked well. I really enjoyed the salad with the Pollo Fritto, deep fried chicken wings with aged balsamic vinegar. It was a match made in heaven.
Another beautiful dish was the Grappa cured Atlantic salmon with lemon and crostoni, and although I knew it was a bad idea to fill up on bread, I couldn’t help it, this was too good! I didn’t try the Pan fried sardine fillets with crushed chick peas, chilli and oregano but it got the thumbs up from the girls. The Grilled Scallop on the half shell with chorizo and pangrattato was a great combination of flavours and textures – the juicy scallops teamed perfectly with the salty, meaty chorizo and the crunch of the pangrattato. The platter of prosciutto crudo was also quickly devoured.
In true blogger fashion, we all coordinated to order different mains, which we then shared, meaning that we’d get to try many more dishes from the menu. Steph was immediately drawn to the Vincigrassi - porcini, mushroom, prosciutto, truffle and parmigiano lasagne, which was very rich and filling. It was delicious, but perhaps better in small doses, as Steph couldn’t finish it.
For my main I couldn’t go past the Rosticciana - sticky beef short ribs, vin cotto, agro dolce and lemon. I hardly even needed my big steak knife, because the meat literally fell off the bones and melted in your mouth. The flavours were big and bold, comfort food at it’s very finest. I think it could have only been better accompanied with a nice glass of red. I was very impressed and would definitely order it again.
Jen tried the Pappardelle, which was another dish I’d also had my eye on. It had pork sausage, chorizo, tomato and rosemary ragu with parmigiano on beautiful house-made pasta. It was a winner of a dish, a beautiful Italian classic executed perfectly. This would be absolutely perfect on a cold winter’s night.
Karen is a seafood fiend so the Jewfish and clams steamed in white wine, chilli, garlic and fresh herbs was her choice. It was much lighter than many of the other mains, which meant she still had the stomach capacity to finish off what we couldn’t from ours!
The Maiale Brasato - pork braised with treviso, pancetta and reggiano belonged to my neighbour Robert (@_montagu) which looked particularly delicious, although I didn’t get to try this one.
I was seriously lacking stomach space and ready for a nap by this point, but there was still dessert to go! These were brought out as shared plates so that everyone could have a taste of all of the dishes.
The Sicilian Cannoli were filled with ricotta, candied lemon, pistachio and chocolate. They were quite heavy and not very sweet. The Torta Di Verona with mascarpone, pandoro, blueberries and almond trifle looked more like something you’d see on the breakfast table but it was a nice blend of flavours, although quite boozy. I don’t really remember the Baked Meyer Lemon and mascarpone cheesecake with preserved plum except that it wasn’t as lemony as I would have expected. But the dessert that stole the show was the Warm Baked Chocolate with almonds and vanilla gelato. With a sublime soufflé like texture, this dessert was rich without being heavy and sweet but not cloying. The almonds on top gave it a nice textural crunch. The vanilla gelato was delicious and creamy, the perfect accompaniment.
It was a fun (although late) Monday night, and a chance to meet some great Sydney tweeters and catch up with the girls. The food at Buzo was great, although it was on the pricey side, and the service was excellent. It’s a great place to come for honest Italian comfort food. I’m still thinking about those sticky beef ribs…two weeks after the dinner! I think there will definitely be a return visit in my near future.
Buzo Trattoria - 3 Jersey Rd, Woollahra