We’d been recommended by a few people to go to Bella Brutta in Newtown, as these tipsters spoke of its great pizzas and casual vibe to enjoy a social catch up with a few drinks. There’s been a lot of hype, for it received a timeout award. You can judge for yourself whether it meets up to that.
There’s two options, ordering off their menu or two banquets for $50 or $60 (for 4 or more diners). The difference in the banquets is the $50 option has entrees (small plates) and pizzas, whilst the $60 option had the entrees (larger plates) with pizzas.
We opted for ordering from the menu since we deduced it would be better value and we could get more of what we wanted. Amongst the 4 of us we shared the wood fire bread and oil, the roast scallops with garlic butter, prosciutto croquette, tuna carpaccio with capes and lemon from the smaller plates section. These plates ranged from $6 pp (croquettes) to $17 for the carpaccio. The food is rustic Italia, simple but well prepared with high quality ingredients.
From the larger plates, the ricotta gnudi with zucchini and pinenuts was probably the pick of the night, with a creamy filling exuding the gnudi upon bite.
With this a side of grilled asparagus and romesco, as well as a pear, rocket and pecorino salad was a good accompaniment.
Since Bella Brutta is known for their pizza, we also ordered two of these; the pepperoni as the clam (a favoured choice) though after seeing other diners, we were jealous of the sausage pizza. Roughly $28 a pizza, a little steep for a pizza but they’re good. Cooked in a wood fired oven that takes prime position in the room, they’re made in no time. Thin based, charred outside and slightly baked toppings.
We couldn’t leave without a famous creamy cannoli and tiramisu which was easily polished off the plate.
Waitstaff were less than attentive, maybe they’re going for a casual pizzeria vibe. Once we got their attention, the waitress was nice and helpful. The restaurant itself must be busy and we sort of felt we were speed dating since you’re rushed through you’re food (and told that) they want you in and out to fill their table.
135 King St Newtown
Open 5pm-11pm (from 12 noon on Sundays)