Saturday, 19 April 2014

Pino's Ristorante Pizzeria, Crows Nest

Pino's Ristorante Pizzeria has been around for over 40 years, so I have no idea what it was like back in the day. Despite the negative comments on Urbanspoon that its standards have slipped (particularly in relation to service and the wait for food), our group of 6 had a pretty good Saturday dinner there.
We were seated upstairs, near a long table of about 16 people who were celebrating a birthday. They talked really loudly and blew those annoying whistles, but we somehow managed to tune them out. Framed photos of Florence provided a good conversation base, and we chattered easily until the pizzas arrived (about 15 to 20 minutes).

The rocket salad was really simple - a lot of rocket leaves, some shaved Parmesan, and a drizzle of balsamic vinegar and olive oil. We took out the pine nuts because of Shell's allergies, but I don't think it made too much of a difference to us carnivorous ladies. Clearly, the salad was pretty much ordered so we could say we had our 5 veg (5 rocket leaves!).

Rocket salad ($14.00)
Ordered 3 large pizzas. The pizza base is soft despite being thin crust (if you're a fan of thin and crispy, you're going to be disappointed, but I personally like softer doughs because they're less dry, and these pizzas were certainly not dry). The cheese melted over the top added a lovely richness.

The pizzas were (in order of photos)
1. Pollo - Chicken, avocado and sundried tomato
Safe combination, tasty nonetheless

2. Salami e Tartufo - Salami, mushroom, bocconcini, white truffle oil
Turned out to be my favourite pizza that night.. I'm a huge mushroom lover, and that truffle oil brought me to fungus heaven <3

3. Porcini e Salsiccia - mushroom, Sardinian pork sausage, cheese and basil (that little sprig on top)
Though the toppings sounded similar to the salami pizza, they were vastly different. The pork sausage had a minced up texture, and it was probably the driest of the 3 pizzas.

Pollo pizza - Large ($25.00)

Salami e Tartufo ($26.00)

Porcini e Salsiccia - Large ($27.00)
Corkage felt pretty steep, considering my friend brought one bottle of wine and not all of us drank - over $20 ($3.50pp x 6). But then again, I never BYO so I don't know if that's a reasonable price?

Pino's Ristorante Pizzeria on Urbanspoon

Bravo Trattoria (59 Willoughby Rd, Crows Nest)

We opted to have ice cream at Bravo Trattoria, just a couple of doors down from Pino's. A little expensive - 2 scoops for $6.80, but the gelato's great. Had 1 scoop of taro and 1 scoop of ferrero rocher, which were delicious in their own right - but probably not the best combination to have side by side :/

Since taro is my favourite frozen yoghurt flavour, I was glad that this tasted just like it, except for the creamier gelato texture. The ferrero rocher was nutty, chocolatey and oh so very rich. Looking back in hindsight, I should have traded off the taro for the coffee flavour, since coffee and ferrero rocher balls are such excellent companions.

Poor Shell couldn't have any dessert there because of her nut allergy - she asked the charming European waiter if the tiramisu had nuts, had her hopes raised up when he said he didn't think so, but which then got cruelly dashed when he delivered the bad news a few minutes later. We were reassured that they do have nut-free coffee, though!

Ice cream @ Bravo Trattoria ($6.80)

Bravo Trattoria on Urbanspoon

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