87 Flinders Lane
Melbourne, VIC 3000
Carbs get an unreasonably bad rap these days. What started out as the foundation of the food pyramid quickly deteriorated into The One Thing You Should Never Eat If You Want To Lose Weight Fast. Whilst I definitely agree 7-9 serves of carbohydrates a day is beyond excessive, avoiding the food group altogether just seems absurd. Especially when pasta is a thing that exists.
Terra Rossa has been around on the fashionable Flinders Lane for yonks, and appears to be a perennial favourite with the local business-folk and the cocktail-hunters. Its old-world opulence is undeniably attractive, along with its succinct menu of antipasto and Italian staples.
I started the meal with a simple Bellini ($10), the sweet and crisp bubbles marking the start of the long weekend. The addition of a maraschino cherry was the literal cherry on the top, on the bottom.
Spaghetti vongole is my all-time favourite pasta dish, so I couldn’t go pasta past the Spaghetti, Prawn, Clams, Chilli, Lemon ($29). This was a surprisingly delicious rendition, the thick strands of pasta wrapped in a dash of olive oil and lemon. The simplicity of the dish let the briny flavours of the seafood, as well as the fresh fronds of dill and parsley do all the talking.
Chris has a Garfield-esque love for lasagne, and was still heartbroken that he was jibbed out of lasagne at Shakahari. Three months ago. So of course, he went straight for the Lasagne, Slow Cooked Pork and Veal, Porcini, Reggiano, Soft Herbs ($28).
Baked into a cast-iron pot, this was layers upon layers of saucy meat, rich béchamel, and soft pasta sheets. On the side was a delicious green salad, the fresh leaves given a bit of a kick by a handful of pickle slices.
And for veggies, we had a plate of Green Beans, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Anchovies ($9). As someone who adores anchovies, I was upset that there weren’t whole anchovies, but rather an anchovy mash emulsified in the puddle of olive oil at the bottom. The sauce did taste fantastic when you dipped bread into it though.
I had a good time at Terra Rossa, and the food was definitely above average, but $76 was way, way too much to be paying for 2 pastas, a side, and a simple cocktail. I had an Entertainment Book voucher which made the cost much more reasonable (25% off), but it was still almost as much as a meal at Tipo00. And everyone knows they do the best pasta in town.
Rating: 13/20 – really, really overpriced.
This rating reflects my personal experience at the time of visit.