Templo, Hobart

Fried brioche with sweet ricotta

Fried brioche with sweet ricotta

Our restaurant critics' picks of the latest and best eats around the country right now: Templo, Hobart.

You can count the good options for eating out on Sunday and Monday nights in Hobart on one hand (and have fingers to spare). Which means tiny new neighbourhood restaurant Templo, with 20 or so seats and open Thursday to Monday, has been welcomed with open arms by locals. If you're a visitor here, don't be surprised to find that everyone else in the restaurant seems to know each other. And, while it's licensed with a small wine list, its BYO policy, with $15 corkage per bottle of wine, makes it that bit more endearing.

Owners Matt Breen and Chris Chapple, chef and front of house respectively, do virtually everything themselves, and that adds to its charm. In such a tiny space, with a few small tables in front of a light-flooded window, three seats at a petite bar and a round table that can seat a group of eight - the kitchen visible from all of them - it's impossible not to engage with both of them. Breen's food has an Italian bias, reflecting his time working at Hobart's Smolt and, before Templo opened, a few months at Melbourne's Tipo 00. He makes gnocchetti daily and serves it with broccolini and chilli, and the equally Italianate beef carpaccio with radicchio and anchovy cream is also a regular on a blackboard menu of around 10 dishes. Both are highly recommended. Lemon semifreddo with a simple pistachio garnish is a good way to finish, maybe after veal cotoletta.

Templo's menu is available all day, so it's a good option for lunch, as well as a gin and tonic or glass of wine in the evening with a couple of small plates. The beginning of the week is looking up.

Templo, 98 Patrick St, Hobart, Tas, (03) 62 347 659. Open Thurs-Mon 11am till late.

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