The Italian Bowl - Review
It's never good to start a review with the word "rustic" and "family-friendly", but there are no better terms to describe the vibe of Newtown’s favourite piece of Italy.
Nestled in the middle of King Street's noise and bustle, The Italian Bowl has become renowned for their home-made cuisine, their family-owned and run ethos, and the endless cues that seem to snake up the narrow footpath. The interior itself, if you're lucky enough to snag a table, is reminiscent of a country-side villa decorated with out-door lights and low-hanging archways - it's the closest any Aussie can get to the charming appeals of Florence…for now.
However, what they lack in pedestrian-convenience, they more than make up for with some of the best pasta in the southern hemisphere. Let alone the fact you get to pick and choose the pasta and sauce that works best for you.
Upon recommendation from a sales assistant at Elizabeth's Bookshop, I choose to opt for their Gnocchi with Carbonara sauce. While some might say that creamy Gnocchi is much-too-heavy for the beginning of an Australian summer, and would typically be correct, this Gnocchi is different.
Dangerously light, yet deliciously carby pieces of potato that go down as smoothly as a shot of Korean soju. But just like soju, this Gnocchi will catch up with you quickly if you manage to finish your bowl - beware the Christmas-level food coma that follows!
The Carbonara sauce… wow. For something that's only comprised of bacon, eggs, cream and shallots, this sauce is so rich and flavourful, while also being incredibly more-ish. For someone who considered themselves a connoisseur of all that is creamy and cheesy, this carbonara takes the cake.
I cannot stress this enough though: pace yourselves. I walked in with an empty stomach and left with what felt like a second-trimester baby-bump - and all for a pretty affordable price.
I'd say that The Italian Bowl is a perfect place for second-dates, students on pay-day, or any foodie who values 'substance' over 'style' in their home-style cooking.
255 King St, Newtown theitalianbowl.com.au