On Saturday night we arrived at Rococo without a booking, so when we entered, the waitress explained to us that they had a table for the 2 of us, but as they were quite busy, we would have to be prepared to wait for our meals once we ordered. Nobody likes to wait, but at least we were warned before we were seated, which I think Rococo should be praised for. The waitress seated us right near the big open fire, which was perfect on such a cool, rainy Autumn night.
For starters we ordered a couple of plates to share. Deep Fried Calamari, with Green Salad and Home Made Aioli was first. The Calamari was so tender and crunchy and a pleasure to eat. None of this chewy, fish n chip shop Squid Rings.
The second starter we ordered was Bread, topped with Caramelised Onions with Marinated Olives. The Caramelised onions were so sweet and the bread so soft. It was similar to Turkish bread and quite possibly could have been. The olives were all different types, with all different shapes, colours and sizes. Eating these olives were like eating savoury fruit salad, so many flavours! Oh... I forgot to mention, there was hardly any wait for our starters and by the time we had finished them, our Mains were pretty much already on their way! If anything, they were served too quickly. So much for having to wait.
The delicious food continued through to our Main Courses. I ordered the Slow cooked Veal Osso Bucco, which was flaked into a tomato sauce as a ragu and mixed into some authentic Papardelle. The serving was huge and there was no way I was going to be able to finish it after our great starters. The veal was so soft and the tomato sauce cooked slowly, so that it had become sweet. The dish was finished off with some basil pieces and some shaved Parmesan.
My dinner date ordered the Gnocchi, which was topped with Mozzarella, Basil and Tomato Sauce. The dish looked amazing. The Gnocchi was soft and fluffy, while again, the Tomato sauce was rich and sweet. A basic Italian dish, done pretty much to perfection. The great part about Rococo, is not only the food and the great service, but the price. We left, rolling out the door and our total bill for dinner and drinks was $65. Usually at most places you get what you pay for, but at Rococo, you get more! The service is a standout also. The staff are always there to make sure everything is OK, that you're happy with your meals and that you're glasses are always topped up.
Rococo may not quite be a fine dining restaurant as such, but if you're after a classy night out with friends or even an intimate meal with a loved one, Rococo would be perfect. The heart warming Italian food, is basic, but done amazingly well and perfectly suited to a cold Melbourne night. Belissimo!
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