There so many things I loved about our visit to Melbourne and a lot of these resolved around food :) Melbourne has such a vibrant culture when it comes to dining and entertainment. In almost any street, sidewalk or alleyway, there are unique and wonderful experiences to be had.
Out of all the restaurants and cafes we visited over our four day stay, there were a few that really stood out. These included places like Movida and The Press Club, both of which you remembered long after you left and couldn’t wait to visit again. Il Bacaro Cucina e Bar was one of these restaurants.
Tucked neatly away in Little Collins Street, Il Bacaro’s facade could almost be mistaken for a boutique bookshop, if not for the myriad of wines displayed along the window. As you step inside, you could be excused for feeling a little cramped, but once seated, you begin to appreciate the restaurants intimate yet buzzing ambience. The giant bar, splitting the restaurant into two down the middle, may have something to do with this!
When it came time for ordering, we ordered the following from the Antipasti menu:
ostriche al naturale ($3.80 each)
seasonal oysters served with wild lime and poached pear dressing (pictured above).
calamari st. andrea ($20)
shallow fried calamari with a rocket and balsamic dressing (pictured at the top).
The oysters were incredibly fresh and I loved how they wrap the lime in fishnet material. Those are the little touches that really add to the dining experience. The calamari was absolutely delicious, with only just enough batter so that the calamari shines through.
For mains we ordered the following pasta dish from the Pasta e Risotta menu, as well as one of the Specials on the night – my sincerest apologies as the name of the dish has completely escaped my mind.
spaghettini con cicale di mare aglio, “olio visadi” e rucola ($33)
spaghettini with Moreton Bay bugs, “olio visadi”, garlic and rocket (pictured above).
Both these dishes were delicious, but the Spaghettini with Moreton Bay bugs was in one word, amazing. It is truly one of the best tasting pasta dishes I’ve ever had the pleasure of eating. So much so that I wished my partner had ordered the same so that I could have eaten half of hers. But alas, it wasn’t to be.
In terms of wines, there is a great selection to choose from, as well as spirits, beers and cocktails.
To sum it all up, Il Bacaro is one of Melbourne’s standout restaurants, without the excessive price tag to go with it. If you are after beautiful, delicious Italian food, in an intimate yet buzzing environment, I highly recommend you visit Il Bacaro Cucina e Bar!