Restaurant Guide

Florentino: Restaurant review

It's the professionalism of the service, honed over a lifetime, and the opulent setting of 85-year-old murals and chandeliers, that makes Florentino something special.

Address

80 Bourke St,
Melbourne, Vic

Hours

Lunch Mon-Fri noon-2.30pm;
Dinner Mon-Sat 6pm-10.30pm

Prices

2 courses $65 (lunch only),
3 courses $150;
Dégustation $180

There's no dining room in Australia like Florentino's Mural Room. Almost nine decades' worth of patina helps, as do the chandeliers and the murals painted in 1935, but it's the resistance to coasting that's most impressive. From the scrupulously ironed linen and the quality of the Champagne in the trolley that's wheeled to each new table, to the charming and seamless service led by chef Guy Grossi's son Carlo, the level of care, generosity and, yes, love for this dining institution by the Grossi family equate to the sense of occasion. The menu lists big-ticket ingredients - duck, venison, prawns, chestnuts – in combinations that blend classic Italian and modern Australian cooking. A buttermilk panna cotta lands as a frozen white sphere. Textbook risotto combines razor prawns and sarawak pepper, while scallops and sweetbreads are flavoured with almonds and lemon. It's pricey, high-end dining with a hefty wine list to match, so perhaps a visit to Florentino isn't an everyday affair, but with the Tuscan-style Grill and the much-loved Cellar Bar just downstairs, there are other ways to soak up all this history and hospitality know-how.
Phone:
(03) 9662 1811
Bookings:
Bookings essential
Features:
  • Licensed
  • Vegetarian-friendly
  • Wheelchair access
  • Private room
  • Impressive wine list
Accepted card types:
  • American Express
  • Diners Club
  • Eftpos
  • MasterCard
  • Visa
Chefs:
Guy Grossi & Chris Rodriguez
This review was made independently for the Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Guide. The guide's reviewers visit unannounced and pay their way.