LA dolce vita, or the sweet life, is what you can enjoy at Perth’s newest eatery, Cucina on Hay.
Cucina, meaning kitchen in Italian, dishes out all the staples found in mama’s home and are shared just as you would with the famiglia.
To start we enjoyed a charcuterie selection of local Mondo Doro prosciutto di Parma with house-made spiced crispy bread and Mondo Doro WA and Italian charcuterie selection served with house-made spiced crispy bread and a chicken piadina ($17) with grilled chicken tenderloins, oregano, rocket and fontina cheese.
My absolute favourite way to eat, it was the ideal way to start the dining experience.
Next was what I would call winter in a dish: 18-hour slow-cooked lamb osso buco, which was cooked perfectly and nestled nicely on a bed of Grana Padano cheese polenta and gremolata ($23).
Washed down with a glass of Tuscan Aquilani Sangiovese, it was warm, full-bodied and delicious.
The duck cappelletti ($19) with traditional Emilia-Romagna pasta filled with roast duck and leek filling and drizzled with sage brown butter was served with fresh tomato and shaved parmigiano-reggiano (four pieces).
Light and fresh, it is a perfect starter or the right sort of main you can enjoy with one of the kitchen’s pizzas or starters on the menu.
Also on offer are arancini, pork belly bites, grilled octopus and a selection of pizzas, while on the sweeter side a traditional tiramisu ($10) and Zabaglione semifreddo ($10) are great ways to finish off a meal.
Having opened in March as part of the Mercure Hotel, this casual and relaxed eatery showcases authentic Italian fare in the city’s east end.
The menu shines with house-made ingredients, imported Italian treats and outstanding local produce from West Australian suppliers and growers.
Staff at Cucina on Hay say they their food is not just nourishment – it is life and I would have to agree.