Authentic Italian? Tick. Delicious food? Tick. Friendly efficient service? Tick.
L’Antica Trattoria in Mt Lawley is a three-tick restaurant for me. And yes that is something like Michelin stars or chef’s hats but much more attuned to my taste!
We had booked tickets for an Abba tribute show at the Astor Theatre on Beaufort Street and decided to have dinner nearby first. L’Antica is just around the corner on Walcott Street. L’Antica, which translates to ‘The Ancient’, is just around the corner on Walcott Street. It belays its name by serving some thoroughly modern Australian-Italian dishes.
L’Antica’s décor is very retro, reminiscent of underground trattorias in Rome circa 1980, as well as several older Italian restaurants in Perth with loads of exposed brickwork and red checked tablecloths.
We decided to skip the starters and just had some garlic Foccacia ($10) instead. For our meals, three of our group decided on the same dish, Ravioli di Mare ($28.5) – seafood filled ravioli tossed with prawns and scallops in a garlic cognac sauce.
One person had the Pappardelle Beef Angus Ragu ($24.5) – a bolognese in tomato sauce. I was torn between the Gnocchi di Zucca ($26) – pumpkin gnocchi in a creamy sauce tossed with crispy pancetta and feta cheese, topped with walnuts and the Scaloppini al Marsala ($36) – veal slices pan fried with Marsala and balsamic, served with roasted vegetables. I eventually plumped for the gnocchi and was delighted with my choice. In Perth I have found that several Italian restaurants serve gnocchi that is a pale imitation of gnocchi I have enjoyed on holidays to Italy. But L’Antica was an exception. My fellow diners were equally happy with their dishes – lots of scallops and prawns and a delicious sauce was the verdict about the seafood ravioli and the beef Angus ragu was simply ‘really good’.
The menu is extensive including calzones and lots of pizzas from the restaurant’s wood-fired pizza oven and if you will pardon the expression – pizzas were being turned out like hot cakes!
As we had virtuously bypassed the starters we decided that a dessert would be okay and crème brulee was the option for all five of us. It was fine but not up to the standard of the main course dishes.
L’Antica was quiet when we arrived at 6pm but really bustling when we left about 7:30pm – it has heaps of atmosphere with a mix of age groups from children to young couples to seniors. We even spotted a few Perth ‘identities’ mingling with the diners.
Mt Lawley’s new restaurants may be getting all the media publicity but a few old favourites, such as L’Antica, should definitely not be overlooked.
Address: 60 Walcott Street, Mt Lawley
Phone: 08 9371 5469
Opening hours: Monday – Sunday from 5pm until late
Gluten-free options: Yes
Vegetarian options: Yes
Restrooms: Clean and accessible
Parking: There are a couple of parking areas across Beaufort Street on the west side of Walcott Street and some street parking available further east on Walcott Street.
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