Skip to main content

Il Nido Trattoria Pizzeria Revisited - Balgownie NSW

"Oh yes, there are so many diners now."   It seems the evening had built to a crescendo of aromas, flavours and guests.  The level of chatter was hitting the ceiling.

Outside, on a narrow paved foot path, there was a long table laid out, with white and red check cloth, as if this was in the middle of an olive grove.  Okay, I begun to finally get it - this was a family gathering, a community hub and a place to relax with many people.  No standing around  like cocktail hour in Aussie joints, with customers holding their precious half empty glass, I noticed  - the Italian tradition is to be seated,  and I mean seated close to each other.  The conversation is important, the listening look is critical and the wine is important.   The Giulani family photos are lovingly still on the wall.

The servings are wholesome, cooked well and welcome.  Wine is BYO but there is a good in-house selection of craft beer, Peroni on tap and imported beer as well as Aussie stubbies of VB, James Boags and Tooheys.   Il Nido for many years is well known for its liquors, port, Bourbons, rum and digestives and the tradition is still continued after being embedded by Adriano's parents.

There are three important menus - seasonal, black board and takeaway.  Oh yes, it is still best to phone in for your take away orders and then come at your leisure.

On our most recent visit,  there was a unnerving concentration of people walking in and huddling around the inside of the front entrance  - were they waiting for their take aways, or hoping for an unbooked table, or just undecided what to do next?   I recognised  a person from the past but this chap turned his face away once he recognised me, even under the dim reddish light - how sad, it is his baggage.  

The gradually darkening outside soon became solid night fall.   The headlights of turning and parking cars could be seen through the windows.  The chatter continued.  Breads alternated with wines, pizzas, beers, cured meats and mains.  Village life still flourishes.

Risotto, Ragu, cheeses and antipasto are staples, as from the old country, but now served in an upbeat contemporary style.

I recognise Adriano, busy inside the open but long deep kitchen as usual - and also one of his long time staff, a young man with spectacles and serious about his work.  They are both easy to talk to. My pork belly should be shared by three but I have it all by myself, a tad rich.  A mate has the veal, which was not top notch this evening due to supply variations, but we thought it is good for the staff to know.   The bespectacled young man takes this in his stride and I am impressed.

Il Nido Tratorria Pizzeria is located at Shop 1 of 154 Balgownie Road in Balgownie Village NSW, up the slope from the Balgownie Collegians and adjacent to the Bally Pub across the roadway.
Opening hours are from 530pm till late every evening except Mondays and Tuesdays.
Contact +61 2 4284 8664


Popular posts from this blog

Chung Ling Alumni Association Petaling Jaya Klang Valley

Telephone Contact:  +603 7957 0318

85 Degrees Bakery Cafe Hurstville NSW

There are several outlets of this bakery cafe for several years now in Australia.  Did they coem from the USA?

Each franchised outlet is in a busy area, often in suburbs so-called by a diverse Asian demographic.   The one in Hurstville is rather roomy and lots of baked stuff on its shelves.   The base of Sydney operations is in Chester Hill, a suburb south-west of the Sydney city centre.

Some of the cake creations would be viewed as rather leaning on the East Asian dimension  - Strawberry Angel (with chocolate base and top) and Mango Cheese ( with yoghurt).   However, to counter this perspective, there are also Death by Chocolate, US Cheesecake, Coffee Brulee and Blueberry Marble options.    

The pastries are definitely filled with ingredients more suited to perhaps Anime loving fans and non-mainstream cultures - for example, garlic, pork, tuna, green tea, red bean, shallots, pork floss, coconut, Hokkaido butter cream and Boroh or pineapple buns.   Sung seems to be a variation emphasised…

Penang - Lor Mee

Lor mee is another of those street foods that are not commonly available in Western societies, but are easily found in southern China, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore. The dish is iconic of the Teochew Province in China and has been mainly brought to equatorial climes by immigrants over the last few centuries. It combines snippets of ingredients in a thick savoury sauce. Above, the lor mee with roast pork and sliced hard boiled egg accompaniments at the Fong Sheng Cafe, along Lorong Selamat in Georgetown, Penang - the place was introduced by May Wah and Henry Quah.

The cafe harks back to the seventies or eighties - and maybe earlier - what caught my eye were (above) freshly blended fruit and/or vegetable juices and (below) metal and plastic contraptions of the food trade.

Hot and cold drinks are easily on offer from the cafe (above and below) at very reasonable prices.

Another version of the dish (below) taken whilst Bob Lee was enjoying them in another cafe or coffee shop in Georgetown…