Boasting a casual but sophisticated dining ambience, The Italian Kitchen is part of Westfield Miranda's new outdoor restaurant precinct. It's the latest venture by the same operators who run Sydney's Flying Fish, Dedes Restaurant and Watergrill among others.
Being a rather picky critic (especially of Italian food), I was sceptical at first as to how good the Italian at a shopping mall could really be. However, I was pleasantly surprised that this all day restaurant, bar and cafe, serves some very tasty and authentic Italian food. Plus its outdoor location amongst some other notary tenants like Din Tai Fung, Mejico and Messina Gelato, has an upmarket look so you really don't feel like your're at a Westfield.
Firstly a word of advice, the restaurant was quite busy on a Thursday night so my recommendation is to book ahead and avoid disappointment. We started with the mozzarella chips with tomato sugo (Italian sauce) and they were decadent but delicious. Their wood fired bread and dips were equally as yummy. There is also a great selection of salads like the asparagus with witlof, artichoke, baked ricotta and pine nuts.
They also serve an interesting selection of pastas such as the Pappardelle with braised suckling pig, rucola, rosemary, and parmesan and the squid ink tagliatelle. Their wood fired pizzas, whilst a tad on the pricey side, are perfectly cooked and made with quality ingredients. The pizzas really are large enough for two people.
If pizza and pasta aren't your cup of tea, The Italian Kitchen does serve other mains like rib eye, suckling pig and grilled snapper. The waiters were attentive enough and overall it was an enjoyable dining experience. As for dessert, I'm afraid we did not get to try any on this occasion because we were saving some room for a visit to the very addictive Messina Gelato afterwards!