Interior images of Mediterranean stalwart, Syracuse, have always piqued my interest, though I never managed to make a visit until now. Philippa Sibley has been in charge of the kitchen for just over a year - an even better reason to make my way there for lunch. The restaurant is cosier than expected, and exudes a classic warm and moody atmosphere. Syracuse was originally just a wine bar back in 1996, and there's still an impressive selection of wines to try (over 600!) as well as expert sommeliers...

Way back when, Piccolino's was a pizza and pasta take-away store, but since the early 90's it's expanded and become a fully-fledged restaurant with impressive architecture to boot. Your first sighting of the interior might just take your breath away. Designed by internationally-recognised Hachem Architects, the 100-seat restaurant features a pizza oven with a towering flue that extends all the way up to the lofty ceiling. A mezzanine level is set just behind it....

Chef and co-owner Adel Mostafa may not be Italian, but given he’s lived in Italy for 17 years you could say he knows a thing or two about how to cook Italian food. Since moving to Australia, he owned several restaurants in Melbourne before settling into Hawthorn, opening Mother Dough last year....

It’s been 10 years since Cecconi’s moved to it’s current Flinders Lane location from Southbank, now hidden under street level. The family-run restaurant is under the headship of matriarch Olimpia Bortolotto, serving classic Italian food. Aside from the main restaurant, there’s also a private cellar bar, and the more casual and more affordable cantina which provide different dining experiences....