When you think of classic food fusions, Maltese and Italian are not normally the combination that springs to mind.
However, it should be for anyone that has dined at ZaZa’s Cucina Italiana, which was awarded top 25 new Italian restaurants in Victoria and winner of the people’s choice award in the Shoot the Chef competition.
With their modern Mediteranneo/ Italian inspired menu ZaZa’s are re-writing the rules of classic Italian meets modern dining.
ZaZa’s Cucina Italiana’s owner and chef, Dario D’agostino has a long and illustrious history in the Italian food industry. His current venture came about when he joined forces with a good customer, Peter, who was planning on opening a Maltese bar around the corner.
“We became mates and when his deal for the Maltese bar fell through, we thought that it was going to be a good idea to fuse Maltese cuisine with Italian and we came up with this concept.
“Our philosophy is very simple, sharing is caring,” says D’agostino.
D’agostino says he creates the menu based on old recipes and the best local ingredients he can find.
“Our produce is mostly sourced locally, however we do import most of our beverages, as the winery is family owned. Seasonality is crucial in our sourcing.”
“I basically match the flavours of both wine and food in order to compliment each other. The wine doesn’t need to overpower the food however it’s always a personal taste, so I consider the market trend of what people are after as well.”
The most popular meals on the menu currently are the Grilled Octopus, Spelt Couscous, Chickpeas and Gozitan Capers salad, the Slow Cooked Lamb Shoulder with Lentil Ragout and Pumpkin Mousse and the Carbon lover – Pizza Fritta, Mozzarella, Prosciutto.
According to D’agostino, the top three drinks are the Aperol Spritz, the Cester da Sogno Prosecco and the Amorino Montepulciano D’abruzzo.
10/53 Coppin St,
Richmond VIC 3121
(03) 9421 6221