Maccaroni Trattoria Italiana, CBD

12/23/2015 , , 0 Comments

Maccaroni Trattoria is an Italian restaurant located in the CBD, on Manchester Lane just off Collins St before Lindt Cafe and Tiffany & Co. It's part of three restaurants that specialises in traditional Italian cuisine; two are more of the main traditional pizzas/pastas (located in CBD and Clifton Hill), and one is a pastisserie with a range of traditional cakes and desserts.

The restaurant we visited in the CBD had a very homely feel to it, with simple decorations and soft music playing in the background. The whole atmosphere was very comfortable and relaxing; the perfect way to wind down after a long day or week. The service was great, we didn't have to wait too long for our food. The staff were friendly and attentive, coming to take our dishes almost straight after we'd finished and giving us more water when the first bottle had been finished.

The menu had a really good range of pizzas and pasta, as well as meat based dishes and desserts. We went with an antipasti; Tagliere Italiano ($14) as an entree to share, a pasta dish each - the Maccaroni Incasciati ($16) and the Forest Tortellini ($18), as well as a slice of tiramisu cake ($6.50) to share. The Tagliere Italiano consisted of proscuitto, salami, olives, roasted pepper, sun-dried tomatoes and a trio of cheese served with ciabatta bread. It was a really large, generous portion as on the menu it stated it was served for 1; we definitely wouldn't have been able to finish it by ourselves! This entree had a really great range of flavours and textures, and was a light, refreshing way to start the meal. The favourite elements for both my friend and I would probably have to be the sun-dried tomatoes, roasted capsicum and the bocconcini cheese. I especially enjoyed the sun-dried tomatoes as they still maintained some of the natural flavour and texture of the tomato itself, and the bocconcini, as it was chewy and didn't have too strong of a cheese flavour. The ciabatta bread was really great by itself as it had herbs and olive oil on it, but it also went well with the rest of the dish to balance out the flavours when they got a bit heavy, such as the salami and the prosciutto. There was also a small salad underneath the proscuitto slices that was refreshing and complimented the rest of the dish well. However, later on we were both feeling really thirsty, presumbly from this dish, as it did have some elements that were quite salty.

The Maccaroni Incasciati was a baked maccaroni dish with napoli sauce, beef meatballs, eggplant and mozarella cheese. At first it didn't look like the portion was very large, but it was surprisingly filling with all the elements of the dish. The use of eggplant and pesto on top of all the cheese in the dish was very interesting and a made for a great combination of flavours, and the maccaroni was perfectly cooked. The meatballs themselves didn't have very much taste, but they were soft and moist. The sauce was also a little light in flavour and didn't have much tomato taste to it. Overall, it was an enjoyable, light but filling dish.

The Forest Tortellini consisted of fresh veal tortellini with bolognese sauce, mushrooms, parsley and parmigiano cheese. The tortellini was cooked slightly al dente, and had a really good portion of filling to the pasta itself. As someone who is a really big fan of mushrooms, I really enjoyed all of the mushrooms in this dish - and there was quite a lot of it. The mushrooms were sweet and juicy and also full of the tomato flavour from the bolognese sauce, and the portion of the dish was just perfect to leave you feeling full. The parsley infused throughout the pasta gave it extra flavour, though I would've liked a bit more cheese in the dish. Also, despite there being a good ratio of filling to pasta, the veal itself didn't have much flavour.

The tiramisu was quite spongey, with a good coffee taste and melted in your mouth. It wasn't as creamy as some of the other tiramisus I've had; and so was a bit lighter and didn't feel as heavy. Because of this, they do serve the tiramisu with cream on the side, to give it more texture. I really enjoyed this dessert, and it was a great way to finish off the meal.

I would definitely visit Maccaroni Trattoria again; I'm a huge fan of Italian cuisine and there's so many other dishes on the menu I'd like to try. It's moderately priced with decent portions - for all the dishes we ordered we only had to pay about $27 each.

 Maccaroni Trattoria Italiana on Urbanspoon Website


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