Can Sydney ever get enough glammed-up Italian food? The team behind a rustic little trattoria (cough) from Melbourne called Rosetta are betting that too much is never enough. Opening Tuesday 15 August on Harrington Street in the northern CBD, the three-level eatery seats 90 in the main dining room, 60 outside on the terrace, 28 in the bar and another 50 on the mezzanine.
And how do they intend to fill these many, many seats? With the lure of Italian dining that is modern in its polish without going too tweezery - food that appears on the plate much the same way it reads on the menu, roaming Italy rather than the globe for its inspiration.
Inside Rosetta Sydney.
This being Sydney, seafood is a feature, whether it's in the raw options - scampi with blood orange, mint and pistachio nuts, say, or yellowfin tuna with salsa verde - through to calamari and zucchini fritto with lemon mayo, and whole fish grilled with salmoriglio or fried and served with pesto Trapanese, the almond-based salsa from Sicily. Spaghetti alla chitarra with king prawns and pistachio nuts, a signature from the Melbourne restaurant, is a welcome part of the opening line-up.
Crudo of scampi, blood orange, mint and pistachios.
You want more fresh pasta? You got it. That could mean the perfectly wintry and seasonal orecchiette with cime di rapa, anchovy, garlic and chilli, the luxury of agnolotti del plin stuffed with roast pheasant, veal and pork, or crowd-pleasers such as pappardelle with ragù Bolognese and strozzapreti cacio e pepe.
Burrata, grilled treviso and olive oil.
Unusually for a Sydney restaurant, milk-fed veal, sourced from northern New South Wales, will have substantial representation on the menu, appearing in osso buco with the classic risotto Milanese, in a cotoletta with rocket and parmesan, and veal rump grilled on rock salt.
Rosetta, 118 Harrington St, Sydney, NSW, (02) 8099 7089, rosettarestaurant.com.au. Open lunch Mon-Sun noon-3pm; dinner Mon-Sat 6pm-11pm, Sun 6pm-10pm. Terrace Bar and Mezzanine Bar open daily noon-11pm.