361 Little Bourke St Melbourne, VIC 3000
Ever since their grand opening in 2014, Tipo 00 has truly made a mark in the Melbourne dining scene. Named after the super finely milled flour from Italy, this little pasta bar was awarded the title of ‘Best New Restaurant 2016’ by The Age Good Food Guide. With owners and chefs hailing from the likes of Vue de Monde, Estelle and Merchant, there’s good reason to anticipate a very high standard of food, and judging by the reception they’ve received so far, the restaurant has certainly met expectations.
With barely enough room for 40 customers, I was very excited when K and I managed to secure a table for dinner (hint: book well in advance!). The small space and dim lighting gave the restaurant an intimate, yet relaxed vibe and the waiters were both friendly and very knowledgeable about the food. I thought the menu had a fantastic mix of modernised Italian dishes with some very interesting ingredients like calves liver and stinging nettle – add the handful of specials that were available and it was a difficult decision indeed!
Maybe it’s the cheapskate in me, but I love complimentary bread. In this case, the focaccia tasted fresh out of the oven and that ricotta was super creamy and perfect with that light drizzle of olive oil.
I was a little disappointed with this one – scallops were very small and not at all satisfying to eat, and even though the parmesan bread crumb was lovely and crunchy, its strong flavour overpowered the intended hero of the dish.
A beautiful dish, both visually and in taste. The ox tongue was both tender and full of flavour with the balsamic reduction adding a lovely sweetness that was offset by the pops of peppercorn. K absolutely loved this – probably his favourite dish of the night.
Probably the most popular dish at Tipo 00, and it’s easy to see why. The amazing ink-black pasta with razor-thin strands of squid against the white bowl was truly a sight to behold. The tagliolini was silky smooth and even though the flavours were simple, the sauce coated every strand of pasta. I loved the little pile of fish roe that added special pops of briney deliciousness to the dish.
In contrast to the tagliolini, this gnocchi dish was the epitome of comfort food. The lovely autumnal flavours of braised duck and mushrooms truly warmed the soul and I finally understood what melt-in-the-mouth gnocchi tasted like.
I can never say no to polenta chips, and these are definitely tied for first place along with those from +39 Pizzeria. Amazingly fluffy and soft on the inside, yet surrounded with a thin layer of utmost crispiness, I could definitely sit through a few more servings of these by myself.
The Tipo 00 version of the traditional tiramisu – a thin layer of chocolate atop a ring of chocolate cake filled with rum-infused mascarpone and drizzled with a warm, coffee-caramel sauce. Even though it’s a deviation from the classic flavours, I thought it was absolutely fantastic – the cake was fudgy in consistency and I loved the strong hit of coffee in the sauce as well as the hint of rum.
Did Tipo 00 meet my expectations? Without a question. We left our meal feeling satisfied with the quantity and quality of the food. It was clear that everything was created with love and a lot of thought, and even though the bill wasn’t insignificant, I would gladly return in a flash to try out more of their amazing food.