Run Forrest

Mezzo Bar + Grill’s Pasta Al Giro

Mezzo very first ‘Pasta Al Giro’  is on Monday March 1st 2010 at Mezzo Bar + Grill. See what it’s all about here:

Here is the menu!

Uno | tortelli of ricotta + pumpkin, crushed amaretti biscuit, sage butter sauce Due | giuseppe cocco penne “al forna”, traditional baked sicilian dish with meat, eggplant, peas + egg
Tre  giuseppe cocco spaghettini with fresh tomato, basil + smoked mozzarella Quattro | giuseppe cocco pappardelle with grilled zucchini, zucchini flower + pecorino
Cinque | giuseppe cocco buccatini with mussels, clams + pepperoncino
Sei | ricotta gnocchi with pork + veal sausage ragout
Dolce | Santa Vittoria blood orange Soda sorbet

$45 per person, menu must be taken by whole table.
Bookings: T: (03) 9650 0988

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Lollipop Cakes & Cookies open for business

Maria Lantelme of Lollipop Cakes & Cookies with 'Jungle Party'

Candy coloured girls with flowing brown locks and polka-dot red frocks watch on as lions and zebras jump out from the depths of the jungle – this is the fantastical world derived from the imagination of Maria Lantelme. Maria’s new Melbourne-based venture, Lollipop Cakes & Cookies, creates premium, bespoke themed cakes and unique cookies that are brought to life through her exceptional skills that morph fondant into vibrant characters that are fun for the kids and transport adults back to a childhood utopia.

Lollipop Cakes & Cookies is a product of Maria’s extensive training and passion for baking and cake decorating. Maria trained at the renowned South American SugarCraft School, Ballina Institute under the guidance of Director Marta Ballina who has long been internationally recognised for her skills in cake modelling and creativity. Maria then spent three years completing her Certificate in Hospitality before working as a Pastry Chef at various institutes in Argentina and abroad. As she continued to forge her career, a key highlight came when asked to create a birthday cake for the daughter of Carlos “Gato” Dumas – pioneer of the Argentinean cuisine and restaurant scene, which spurred her desire to go out alone.

Maria came to Melbourne in 2002 and has most recently worked as the Pastry Chef at Cacao Fine Chocolates and Patisserie and later at Oyster Little Bourke. Maria still harks to home and channels the vivacious colours of Argentinean culture in her cakes – adorning them with caricatures and the items of interest or passion of the people for whom they are created. Maria enjoys the process of sitting down with each client to explore and agree on a cake that best suits them and the occasion to ensure a highly individual and personalised piece.

Alongside her cakes Maria also produces unique cookies, including the wonderful Alfajores (a cookie indigenous to her homeland) – a shortbread biscuit filled with the delicious toffee ‘Dulce de Leche’ and rolled in coconut. Maria’s decorating also extends to an array of biscuits with designs tailored for marking occasions such as weddings, births or christenings.

Maria is focused on producing items with a visual ‘wow’ factor but is of course also very particular about how they taste. “I always use the best ingredients for my cakes and cookies from the eggs, sugar and flour to the chocolate and toffee. If I put so many hours into creating a cake and it’s decoration looks amazing it would be disappointing to not have a great tasting cake under all of that!”

Filed under: Cakes, Food, , , , , , , , ,

mezzo [ˈmɛtsəʊ]

[from Italian, literally: half; in the middle]

Half food; Half wine.

Half front of house; Half in the kitchen.

Half Aussie; Half Sicilian.

Half Luke Stringer; Half Joseph Vargetto.

They meet in the middle. Now there’s a new place to dine.

What’s the start to a new year without making a few changes, realising a few dreams, being true to yourself?

Well, that’s exactly what Luke Stringer and Joseph Vargetto, the duo behind Melbourne’s Oyster Little Bourke will be doing. 2010 will kick off with a new look space, a new dining philosophy, a very different food and wine focus, and the launch of a whole new restaurant offer that will reignite the fire in the bellies of these two very passionate blokes.

Despite many restaurants doing it tough at the mercy of the GFC, four-year-old Oyster Little Bourke has continued to thrive. Co-founding partner Frank Wilden left Oyster Little Bourke last year to pursue other interests, and Luke and Joseph saw this as an the opportunity to review what they wanted in life too. And, that, is Mezzo.

“I felt like a fresh change, as did Joe. I wanted to get back to the type of service and food and wine offer that got me hooked on working in this industry in the first place. That spirit of generosity. Of caring yet with an informality. Some good fun and shared experience, but with quality still paramount,” says Luke.

For Joe, it was about working in an environment that allowed a more direct expression of his love for Sicilian food. “I’m keen to create and share the type of food I grew up with that I absolutely adore. There are so many similarities in climate between there and Australia, so it’s the perfect cuisine with which to utilise this country’s abundant seasonal produce,” believes Joe.

Expect more casual environs. A wine list with a more Italian flavour. A menu with impanate, stuzzichini, a salumi selection, pastas, mains and ala piastra. Shared eating. A palpable energy and a genuine passion. A bigger injection of their respective personalities in the way the place ticks.

But due to popular demand (and a guaranteed outcry from the regulars), the beloved oysters, shucked on demand, won’t be leaving the menu just yet…

Mezzo Bar & Grill.

Serves it up from Friday 8th January 2010.
35 Little Bourke Street,
Melbourne, 3000

03 9650 0988.

[Oyster Little Bourke will remain trading as usual until close of business Wednesday 23rd December 2009].

Filed under: Mezzo, Restaurant, , , , , , ,

Run Forrest

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