A few years ago I met a Sicilian girl who I lived with for a year. She was a true Italian in the sense of being super animated with her hands, passionate, expressive, warm and inviting but most of all she was a great cook. Luckily for me she cooked some of the most delicious Italian food I’ve ever had in my life and I’m grateful for the introduction to Sicilian cuisine through her.
Mister Bianco, a hidden gem in the heart of Kew is a beautiful restaurant excelling in authentic Sicilian food rich in southern Italian flavours. The brainchild of chef Joseph Vargetto (ex Mezzo) that continues to evolve year by year whilst adapting their menu to Melbourne’s seasons and trends.
I had the pleasure of dining at Mister Bianco recently for an intimate dinner and to taste test their classic and new menu offerings.
First off the stuzzichini (small bites) course was a beautiful burrata mozzarella served in a ‘money bag’ creation combined with pesto trapanese and candied prosciutto. This mix of sweet and salty flavours worked well with the super creamy melt in your mouth cheese.
Next a traditional favourite Arancini ‘vero siciliano’ with a drop of roasted garlic aioli was warm and comforting – it was gone in seconds. The last of the appetizers was the gently Seared tuna ‘tingara’ presented on a bed of cucumber gazpacho and avocado mousse, just light and refreshing.
We were spoilt with a beautiful plate of Beurre fondue with pepitas, a scallop and prawn ravioli topped with delicious black truffles. The taste was sensational with the sauce rich and creamy, perfect for dipping in the bread to enjoy the flavour of the fondue.
The mains were Duck breast and Black angus porterhouse. Both were beautifully presented, the duck on a quince puree with grilled asparagus and black pepper sauce, while the beef with Sicilian caponata and salmoriglio. The meat was cooked just right, medium rare, tender and complimentary to the flavours of a slight tang and sweetness.
Last but not least our dessert was the gorgeous Cannoli alla Siciliana, a perfect size buttery pastry filled with delicious ricotta on top a bed of freeze-dried raspberries, nuts and chocolate, a match made in heaven.
Bringing the charm and sophistication from Sicily with him, Vargetto gives Melbournians a refined dining experience at Mister Bianco, one that is delectable but also comforting, I am bound to be back next time I have a craving for Sicilian goodness.
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