Budding screenwriter, electro/indie music lover, TV watcher, cinema frequenter, living in Sydney, graduated from RMIT, raised in Brisbane born in El Salvador.
Published April 9th 2014
The Italian restaurant hidden in the city
Say you're near Flinders Street and you want good Italian food, like on Lygon Street but it's all the way up at Carlton. You want a place that's off the main roads and a little intimate. A place where you wouldn't think a restaurant would exist (down a car park entrance).
Then you want Maccaroni Trattoria Italiana restaurant, located off Collins Street down Manchester Lane. Look for the Car Park entrance, which at first is disconcerting but persist and you'll come across the quaint restaurant front.
You'll feel like you've stumble across a hidden Easter egg filled with lovely Italian food - not literally of course. The place feels like a semi-cliched Italian restaurant but with the modernity of an Ikea showroom. It's pretty cozy, so you won't be able to talk wildly with your hands but you probably shouldn't do that anyway.
The menu is short but every dish I or someone else I know has had were delicious. The meals have this homemade feel that add to the coziness. Prices on average are about $15 and the portions should leave you satisfied but if you're really hungry I would recommend an entree.
Their desserts are also tasty and catch your eye in the shop front to remind you that you will have dessert. I've only been there for dinner with friends and on a date, which it catered beautifully for both.
The only downside is finding their bathroom which is down the back and keep going. They also have unisex bathrooms, which works better than it sounds but is a little confronting if you're not used to it.
Even though they have expanded their size it's still a pretty small place, so if you have the foresight of booking - do it. That doesn't mean you shouldn't try to wander down and find this littler Italy that's just as good as its bigger brother.