29 Aug Tipo 00, Melbourne CBD
For her final dinner in Melbourne A2 and I went to a place we’ve both been wanting to visit – Tipo 00. Tipo 00 has been on my radar since I heard it was in development. A pasta bar dedicated to serving up unadulterated home-made pasta dishes? Yes please.
Polished concrete with a painted-on geometric pattern, white marble benchtops, dark woods and bentwood chairs and stools lend a simple, and friendly European air to the restaurant. The restaurant is small with only about 40 odd seats, so it was no surprise to see that it was packed. Tipo 00 was recently voted best casual dining restaurant in the TimeOut Melbourne awards, and it’s reflected by its popularity. Bookings are recommended.
There was a twist on the usual complimentary bread, where we were served focaccia with fresh ricotta and basil oil. The warm, freshly baked focaccia and the subtle flavours of the ricotta and basil oil made for good beginnings.
We shared one entree between us – the lingua. The grilled ox tongue was amazingly smooth and almost melt-in-your-mouth. Its sweet flavour was highlighted by balsamic vinegar and peppery crunches from the pink peppercorns.
There are large plates other than pasta on offer, but we all want to try some of their specialty. J’s dinner choice was the tagliolini al nero – squid ink tagliolini, squid and bottarga. I didn’t try much of it, but it seemed to have a good flavour, with savoury hints of cheese in the light sauce.
A2 chose the pappardelle. Probably because she likes pappardelle. And rabbit. A decent portion of the braised rabbit was nestled on top of the thick ribbons of pasta, with a scattering of chopped hazelnuts for texture. A2 and J found this to be their favourite pasta of the night.
There were so many tempting choices, but I had the pasta special, which was tagliolini with saffron, spanner crab, chilli and zucchini. I might be biased, but this was my favourite of the three pastas we sampled tonight. I loved its clean flavours, the subtle lift from the chilli, the depth from the saffron, and of course, the little morsels of delicate crab meat.
We ended our dinner with their signature tipomisù. A ring of rich, chocolatey brownie-like cake encircled a mascarpone centre, and was topped with a tempered chocolate disc. Additional dollops of mascarpone abounded, and everything was drizzled over by a slightly savoury, rich and decadent coffee caramel sauce. Yum.
As expected, the pasta was perfectly cooked, and flavours simple but satisfying. Everything we tasted impressed. I’ll definitely be back for more.
361 Little Bourke St
Melbourne, VIC, 3000
(03) 9942 3946