Saturday, March 14, 2009

Gastronomic Tour - Haberfield

Today, we had a tour of a Sydney suburb, Haberfield, located in the Inner West of Sydney, about 9 kms west of Sydney CBD. Haberfield is pre-dominantly an Italian cultured suburb, with many shops selling traditional pastisseries, fresh pasta, crusty bread, espresso coffees, pizza and cheeses. Our tour started at the corner of Ramsay and Dalhousie Sts, Haberfield, where we met with Kevin and Cindy. Ramsay St is the main street where the shops are located. We were late, due to the heavy traffic from Chatswood and Caitlin was asleep by the time of arrived. Our 1st stop was Espresso Galleria, for a caffeine hit. The aroma from the coffee beans was heavenly, and that woke Caitlin up. It was what I needed after a late night and early morning, but I would preferred my skinny flat white to be slightly stronger though. Next, we moved to an Italian Pastisserie (Sulfaro A & P Pasticceria Italiana) with traditional pastries, many with ground almonds. There two big fridges displaying sinful desserts like ricotta cheese cakes, cannolli filled with chocolate, custard and cream, tiramisu. There were so many varieties that it was difficult to choose. There was also many Italian people in the shop buying their sweets and desserts, a good sign. My two girls eyes' lit up when they saw the gelato bar and immediately asked for ice-cream, but I promised after lunch. Kevin bought a ricotta cheese cake with pistachios for dessert at a potluck dinner that night. I bought a variety of almond pastries for afternoon, tempted to buy more but had to restrain myself. Next, we went to a fresh pasta shop, Peppe's Pasta, again, a feast for the eyes, with various pastas from lasagne, cannelloni, ravioli, tortellini, angel hair, linguine, spaghetti, tagtialle, parpadelle, fettucini (with different flavours from herb to chilli). We selected what we wanted - Duck, Proscuitto and Caramelised Onion Ravioli, Roast Pumpkin with Sage Ravioli and a pack of parpadelle pasta - to be purchased later since we wanted to have lunch first. The shop next to Peppe's Pasta is owned by the father of Peppe's Pasta, called Haberfield Bakery. There was a queue, indicating a popular store, I bought a large ciabatta (crusty Italian bread) for $2. The restaurant (where we had lunch), La Grotta, also purchased their bread from here, we saw the guy walking out with a big bag of ciabatta. The bag was starting to get heavy, we checked out another fresh pasta store (but not as good as Peppe's) before we headed to La Grotta for lunch. La Grotta, a large spacious restaurant with a big wood-fire oven serving pizzas, pastas, veal, chicken and seafood dishes, plus a gelato bar. We were all hungry now so proceeded to check out the menu to order. We all had the following:
  • Hubby - La Grotta special pizza
  • Cait - Pizza with cherry tomatoes, buffalo mozarella, pasta sauce and cheese.
  • Ash - Roast Pumpkin and Sage Ravioli
  • Cindy - Linguine Isabella - with prawns, vongole and mussels in white wine.
  • Kevin - Linguine Gamberoni (might have been called a different name) with prawns and rocket.
  • Me - Veal Scallopine with Mushroom and Roast Vegies.
  • and as entree - garlic bread with the bread from Haberfield Bakery.

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