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restaurant review: puntino trattoria, woolloomooloo

I was lucky enough to be invited to a menu tasting night at Puntino Trattoria, a gorgeous Italian restaurant in Woolloomooloo. After running late from work and taking a wrong turn or five, I finally arrived to the homely and light-filled restaurant, and was promptly greeted with a smile and an offer of a wine. I was won over already. Throughout the night we got to sample many delicious things from the Puntino menu, a few of which I have raved below (I really liked it, guys!).

My absolute favourite on the menu was the Mozzarella Degustazsione Platter (15.5 per person, minimum 2 people). This was Heaven for me. Mozzarella is one of my favourite cheeses, and it usually seems like a cheese you’re not supposed to, well, just eat. I can’t remember the last time I saw it on a cheese board, so even though I love it, I normally reserve it for quesdillas and bakes (…and eating handfuls from the packet whenever I pass the fridge). I was thrilled to see it on the menu, and for the fact that we’re encouraged to just eat chunks. It comes with four different salts, homemade pesto, cured meats, and something that could be described as a deconstructed frittata. Everything on the plate was delicious and complementary, and you could pull your own flavour combinations together – which I think everyone secretly loves, because it’s the grown up way to play with your food.

We were also able to sample the delicious panuozzos, which are normally reserved for the lunch menu, and are essentially a sandwich made with woodfired pizza dough acting as the bread.  Don’t confuse these with calzones – the panuozzos have less breading, more filling, and less cheese (don’t worry though — all come with the famous mozzarella!). They are lighter than calzones, and a little more intricate in terms of flavours. And with prices between $8-$10, I’d definitely be there once a week if they were closer to my office.

While pizza is undoubtedly amazing, it sometimes feels like it’s no longer revolutionary or surprising. You’ve had one pizza, you’ve had them all, right? Wrong. Puntino has the hands down best pizza I’ve had in years. The bases are thin and crispy, and the fillings are kept simple. You can really taste the individual flavours instead of being inundated, or feeling weighed down. I was hesitant on one of the ones I tried – the ‘Mr Potato Head’ (mozzarella, potato, truffle oil, grana padano, and rosemary $18.90). My hesitancy stemmed from the basic thought of, who needs potato on bread? Apparently me. I don’t think I could eloquently describe how much I love this, so please, just embrace the carbs, and go eat it.

I love, love, love, love pasta. I often joke that I’m only ever going to marry a guy who is from a huge Italian family so I can eat fresh pasta for the rest of my life (I do not have the patience to complete this endeavor myself). Plus, one of my favourite pastas is one that can also severely disappoint: gnocchi. Though, there’s always a feeling of trepidation when I order it at a new restaurant. Are they going to be delicious pillows that melt in my mouth as I bite into them? Or are they going to be glug? Luckily for me, the ‘Gnocchi Sorrentino’ (potato gnocchi cooked in a light napolitana sauce and served with slices of buffalo mozzarealla and basil, $19.90) was the former. Like the pizzas, the gnocchi were served in a way that was simple, but did the flavours the most justice.

I left the restaurant insanely full, but already planning what I’m going to eat the next time I go back. Puntino is one of those gorgeous, inviting Italian restaurants that make you feel like you are part of someone’s home. There is a wonderful energy that makes you completely believe that they are cooking you the foods that they love in order for you to leave full and happy. There isn’t any pretension, just delicious, honest, feel-good cooking.

And, I’m still dreaming of that mozzarella.

 

Opening Hours
Lunch Tuesday to Friday 12noon to 3.30pm
Dinner Tuesday to Saturday From 6pm to 10.30pm

41 Crown St, Woolloomooloo NSW 2011
Phone: (02) 9331 8566

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