From the owners of the Precinct in East Victoria Park, comes No Mafia, a narrow Italian themed restaurant at the south end of William Street. A party of four popped in to get dinner after seeing one of the shows at the Fringe Festival (yes, the review is a little late).
As it turns out we didn't get served any dinner, but we still all still left feeling positive vibes for the place. Let's find out why.
We got there about 9.30pm and it was pretty packed. We asked whether we could get a table or whether we should come back another night, and they said one of the booths was just about to leave. So we popped in and sat ourselves at the bar.
We waited with a bottle of wine at the bar for about 20 minutes, when we were convinced to pick up some starters. Some Bread in Common bread (at $4 per person), prosciutto, some fancy chips with aioli and some beef carpaccio.
All three of these dishes were great. The carpaccio was served with anchovies and pickled something that made for a great salty tang. The chips were good. The bread was great, came without sold-separately oil and was refilled without needing to ask.
In fact, these starters were all so good, and in particular the bread, that we kind of just filled up at the bar. We waited probably 30 to 40 minutes for our booth to become ready and when it finally become available we didn't feel like eating anything else. So we left.
This is kind of a shit review now that I think about it.
Were served and enjoyed.
We loved the chefs working in the exposed galley kitchen. One chef in particular was happy to have a chat to us as we waited for our booth and tried to guess which of the menu items they were preparing. I got nearly every guess wrong.
The waitress was nice enough, although she willfully misrepresented the booths available.
Pretty cool place, although very narrow and hard to get around in. They have really squeezed in tables for people to eat at and it does feel a bit squished.
As we sat at the bar, after the first 15 mins we started to feel a bit cheated; lured into the restaurant at the promise of a booth they clearly couldn't deliver any time soon. We didn't care as we were leaving though, because the food we ate was good, the chefs we spoke to were witty and the place felt edgy and not overwhelming.
Would I go back? Perhaps - though probably not for an actual dinner. It's very much a drink and snack pre-going somewhere else type place. Enjoyable, but bring a backup plan.
6 pre-dinner Italian snacks out of 10