Restaurant Week! My friends and I were quite a big fan of this back in 2011/ 2012, and we used to go for a few meals during each edition. But we slowly found the standards dropping, and things that we weren’t too happy about, so I’ve stopped going. Made a booking with my friend for Otto Locanda, after hearing good reviews about it, checking out all the menus of the restaurants, and cos it’s affordable! No dining star hooray.
Otto Locanda is the baby brother of Otto Ristorante, with its menu also designed by the head chef at Otto, Chef Michele Pavanello. It’s supposed to be cosier, homelier with more of a trattoria feel, and I really do think it has gotten that spot on.
It’s a round space, say no to corners. I really like because it’s special; you don’t really get much of such spaces around. It makes you feel like you’re in a huge, communal and very fun dining room. Lots of wood, copper and warm colours that make you feel right at home. A polished, stylish home. The place was bustling during weekday lunch!
Homemade toasted focaccia bread topped with sundried tomatoes pestos and buffalo mozzarella cheese
Simple but incredibly satisfying, for me at least. I LOVE focaccia and this was the ideal focaccia. It was served fresh out of the oven, and I could already smell it as the waiter arriving at the table . It was extra crispy on the outside, dense and chewy on the inside. Recipe books like to say focaccia is an easy bread to make, but after our attempt that day where we got a less than tasty loaf, I appreciated this one even more. Texture was perfect.
Char Grilled Sliced Beef Sirloin with Soft Polenta Lemon, Capers and Green Olives Dressing
First, please take a moment to admire the beef. Look at the gradient of pink. I hope you can tell how moist it was and how tender it was for pieces of beef cooked medium rare. It was soooo easy to cut through this with my knife and each piece I put in my mouth was just absolutely delicious. Wished it never ended.
Next, take a look at this and admire how much beef there is on my plate. These sets always have such small portions, but Otto Locanda was so generous! LOOK! 4 substantial sized pieces of beautifully charred beef sitting on a soft bed of polenta. I took my time with the beef, and savoured it to the VERY LAST BITE. I was actually sad it was going… going… gone.
Okay I’m not crazy I just do not normally get the deal about beef, save for a few good steaks I’ve had. BUT THIS WAS VERY, VERY AWESOME!!! I THINK I’VE CHANGED MY MIND! Forever a steak fan now. Steak done well can be so amazing.
I loooove how the taste of the beef lingered on the palate for quite a while even after you finished chewing. It was all sorts of happiness – juicy, sweet, savoury, then the smoky and very unique char. Everything was just so balanced and full-flavoured.
The accompaniments on the plate all worked for me too, sauce was rich, polenta was creamy, and the olives/capers perked the flavours up.
Ugh so good I’m in love with it! I even thought about going back again for a second RW meal there…
White chocolate mousse with bitter orange sauce and caramel biscuit crumbs
After the starter and the main which I really loved, came the dessert which was a satisfying end to the meal. The mousse had bits of white chocolate in it, which I liked. I did a little internal jump whenever I bit into one of those. Mousse was very smooth and glided happily down my throat. Super sweet though but man, I’m not complaining.
Service was sooo attentive, the waiter who attended to us was very friendly and chatty. He was so quick I don’t really remember having to wait for my next course or ever ask for more water. Smiles all around!
Thanks Otto Locanda, that was a greaaat Restaurant Week meal! Everything was so good, I don’t have anything to fault. Till the next!
Their set lunch is priced at $32++ normally, and they have quite a good selection on their usual menu too. Head there, it’s simple Italian fare done well 🙂
2 Maxwell Road #01-03
Lunch – Monday to Friday: 11.30am – 2pm
Dinner – Monday to Saturday: 6pm – 10pm
Closed on Sundays