So now that you've seen...and drooled...over that photo are you BUSTING to get down to the restaurant that serves this magical, magical dish? I sure know I was.
Buffalo Dining Club is a small restaurant in Darlinghurst that serves up amazing Italian food. There's pasta (of course) as well as cheeses, prosciutto's (and other meats) and a range of other antipasti delights. This place has been on my list for SO long that I'd almost given up hope of finding the time to make it here...so big thanks to fellow blogger T for arranging this dinner.
This restaurant is very very popular (no surprise as the food is amazing) so we arrive just before 6pm in order to nab a table for four. A tip for y'all, you won't be seated until your entire group is at the restaurant...so make sure you pick your most punctual friends for your outing to Buffalo.
We start off with a Pinot Gris that our waitress highly recommends (as it comes from the region in Italy that she hails from). It's a great wine and I now know 100% that Pinot Gris is my tipple of choice.
Everything we ordered here was spectacular. Looking at these photos again is making me plot exactly when I can get back to Buffalo for more amazing food - like this Mortadella ($11.00) that has been pan-fried so it has a nice charred layer. Mortadella is slightly fatty so the colourful medley of zesty, fresh heirloom tomatoes is a perfect companion.
I'm always in awe of stuffed zucchini flowers ($14.00). Having grown zucchinis myself I know how flimsy the flowers are. They tear so easily and I just cannot imagine stuffing them with cheese and not having the flowers burst or rip apart. These zucchini flowers were filled to the brim, but only when we pried the flowers apart with our knives did the river of cheese within escape. Oh So Good!
Burrata ($19 with a choice of any two sides from the menu) has always been high on my list of foods to eat before I start "that diet" once and for all!
The outer layer of this incredible Italian cheese is made of solid mozzarella and the innards are a soft mixture of mozzarella and cream. The Burrata innards were not as runny as I was anticipating, but more like a soft cream cheese. It was pretty amazing. Our dish was served with (our choice of) potato croquettes and cherry tomatoes and also came with some bread and crunchy pretzel type biscuits. I could actually quite happily head to Buffalo one day for lunch and just have this...
It's always great dining with someone who knows a restaurant menu really well. T knew what was what and highly recommend this Ricotta Gnocchi ($18.00). I think this was probably my favourite pasta dish of the night (yes, I liked it even more than the pasta in the giant cheese wheel). The gnocchi was so soft - it was like eating little pillows of cheese.
The crab linguini ($18.00) was another great dish - the crab was succulent and sweet, yet the flavour was quite subtle.
Ah - does this really need any introduction? Cacio e Pepe ($18.00) translates to "cheese and pepper" which is exactly what this dish is - spaghetti with pepper and Pecorino Romano cheese. The pasta is mixed in a giant wheel of cheese to give it that extra cheese WOW factor. If you're curious (I was - so I asked), the cheese wheel is wiped clean each night, stored and lasts about two weeks. Eventually all the cheese melts away on to the pasta and the wheel has to be replaced. I have no idea if this is a traditional way of serving cacio e pepe but it sure works for me.
And last, but not least, a sensational Tiramsu. Often I find the esporesso flavour in Tiramsu quite overpowering, but our Tiramusu had a lovely mild flavour to and was the perfect way to end a glorious meal.
Like I said before (a thousand times) I really cannot wait to come back here - it's not often that I'm really excited by a restaurant so much so that I plot my return ASAP! And I cannot end this post without saying how friendly the staff are here -- everyone was super nice, just like a big hug from Nonna. Ciao xxx
Buffalo Dining Club is at 116 Surrey Street, Darlinghurst. Phone them on 9332 4052 (and they are closed on Mondays and Tuesdays FYI...and possibly also Sundays?)