New Menu Review: Italian-American Comfort Food at Posto Pubblico

New Menu Review: Italian-American Comfort Food at Posto Pubblico

Nostalgia, comfort and flavour in one neatly bundled package

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jenpaolini  jenpaolini  on 5 Apr '18


Posto Pubblico is back in business after a minor interior facelift – just a tiny nip and tuck in the dining area to smooth its edges and a new al fresco booth to open up the restaurant to the street – but big things have been going on in the kitchen and the menu’s undergone a refreshing transformation while still staying true to its Italian-American roots. Here are some of our favourite dishes from the new menu:

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Cold antipasti platter


The variety of the cold antipasti platter ($269) kept us occupied and coming back for more. With the homemade cheeses gone in a flash of greedy forks, we leisurely sampled our way through four kinds of salumi and crunchy pickled vegetables. The chopped kale salad ($149), crowned with candied hazelnuts, red onion and ricotta and drizzled in a chilli vinaigrette, harkened back to the fine consistency of a tabbouleh and energised our taste buds for the heavier Italian flavours to follow.


Image titleVeal meatballs


As the champion of meatballs, we always expect big things of Chef Vinny Lauria’s veal meatballs ($142), and this Posto Pubblico favourite has remained just that: tender, flavourful, slightly crumbly in texture and delightfully cheesy. They’re a great size for sharing, especially right before you plough into all those #carbs.


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Tuscan-style garlic bread


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Marinated octopus with fettunta


Garlic bread lovers will want to get their hands on Posto’s Tuscan-style garlic bread ($98), a whole Italian loaf stuffed with homemade mozzarella cheese and pesto, as well as the fettunta that’s served alongside the marinated octopus ($149). What’s fettunta, you ask? Oh, just garlic bread taken to the next level: thick grilled slices rubbed with raw garlic and drizzled with olive oil and salt. Mmm...


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Homemade ravioli


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Homemade tagliatelle alla gricia


If garlic bread’s not quite your thing – hey, not judging – there are plenty of other carb-y options to be had. Posto’s homemade ravioli ($169), in the shape of half-moon pillows, are stuffed with homemade mozzarella and ricotta and served with a red vodka sauce and spicy n’duja chunks, with each raviolo coming out pretty substantial without being too heavy. The homemade tagliatelle alla gricia ($174), a thoroughly tried-and-true execution in all aspects, also made an impression on us in all its ribbon-y glory, tossed in a garlicky white wine sauce flecked with succulent pork jowl for a salty umami kick.


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Cacio e pepe


The deceptively plain cacio e pepe ($158) made a trendy comeback a few years ago and may only require a whopping total of three ingredients – spaghetti, Pecorino Romano cheese and black peppercorn – but this recipe’s method makes or breaks the dish. Though it takes more skill than I possess to create the magic that turns water and cheese into a creamy sauce, the team at Posto have got the technique down pat, serving up bouncy spaghetti with a smooth, peppery sauce clinging to its strands. This is one of those dishes that you dig into, thinking, What’s the big deal? I can make this at home! – until you actually try and fail spectacularly, ending up with bland, stringy pasta swimming in a shallow puddle of lukewarm water along with chunky blobs of poorly grated cheese. Yeah, just don’t bother.


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New York strip loin


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Pork braciole


We were treated to a visit to meat lovers’ paradise with a sweet pork sausage ($179) on a bed of pepper and onion, a New York strip loin ($300) with a ruby-red centre and secret homemade sauce and pork braciole ($248), a traditional meatloaf-esque log stuffed with Pecorino, roasted garlic and – how’s this for keeping things interesting? – pak choi. After the onslaught of quite conservative dishes that kept true to the Italian-American spirit, we quite enjoyed this very Asian twist on braciole, especially appreciating the creative adoption of locally available produce.


Verdict

Posto Pubblico’s revitalised menu and sweeping appeal keep its time-honoured Italian-American cuisine in good hands. Be it salads and healthy greens, a meat lovers’ paradise or a carb-tastic fiesta that you have in mind, the team make the most of what’s available on the local organic produce circuit and craft stunning, yet humble, dishes that send Italian-American love right to the tummy. We love the straightforward presentation that reminds us of homestyle cooking – just slap it on a dish or in a bowl and serve it to the hungry masses – and that makes us feel like we’re right at home when making a mess on our plate.


28 Elgin Street, SoHo, Central, 2577 7160


This write-up is based on a complimentary media tasting provided in exchange for an honest review and no monetary compensation. The opinions expressed here represent the author’s.


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jenpaolini

jenpaolini

Yummy yummy in my tummy.

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