Following a sunny and windy day out at this year's Sculpture by the Sea (see my photos here - I go from Tamarama to Bondi), nothing sounded better than a drink and a casual Italian menu aside sparkling Bondi Beach.
|The view from North Bondi Italian Food, Ramsgate Avenue, North Bondi Beach|
The vibe is decidedly casual but stylish with denim-shorted staff, sunnies abound, cutlery at the table, menus doubling as placemats, and good Italian sensibilities to the cocktail, beer and wines list.
|The bar at NBIF|
|Patruni e Sutta beer|
|Complimentary bread and olive oil|
|Robert Marchetti's culatello|
We ended up choosing the culatello - cured pork like prosciutto (from the leg) but rather coming from the pig's rump.
Served tissue paper-thin, the culatello is more divine than any prosciutto I've had. Rich with a collar of fat as well as marbling, the spiced edge added pops of flavour to the gorgeously salty cured pork.
Arriving to the table with a glass bowl over the top for the clam shells, the spaghetti was cooked simply and traditionally with white wine, garlic, parsley and olive oil, and needed a little seasoning which was available at the table.
Mouthfuls of the pasta with the small clams were fresh and so appropriate for the beach setting while the clam-less bites were a little uninspired.
I imagine that it was large cubes of guanciale cured pork jowl scattered throughout but I'm not certain as my past experiences of guanciale have been more tender and deliciously fatty.
|Rocket and fennel salald|
But just sitting, watching the Bondi world go by was sweet enough. With Sculptures ticked off for the year and a full tummy, it was the perfect prelude to summer by the beach.