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Sunday, April 29, 2018

La Rosa The Strand, Sydney

Spit-roasted porchetta at La Rosa The Strand in Sydney

Forget the cheese trolley. Forget the dessert trolley. The porchetta trolley reigns supreme. It's wheeled through the dining room at La Rosa with sombre ceremony. Did everybody's heart skip at beat at the sight of the golden crackling, or was it just mine? I bet yours did too.

Dining room at La Rosa The Strand in Sydney
Dining room

Porchetta might be the flashy star of the show at La Rosa but the menu, which focusses on Roman cusine, has plenty of other equally tasty contenders. It's a little less formal (and less expensive) than sister restaurant, Pendolino, but still date night-worthy with crisp white tablecloths and attentive table service.

Spaghettoni with stinging nettle puree at La Rosa The Strand in Sydney
Spaghettoni with stinging nettle puree, hazelnut and pecorino $19

The pastas are all handmade inhouse. We toy between the capellini with chicken and rosemary, ricotta ravioli and rye flour bucatini with prawns before settling on the spaghettoni with stinging nettle puree.

It's a pretty dish, not dissimilar to pesto in appearance, although the work involved in removing the nettle stings is far more significant. The pasta has a great textural chew. The only thing missing is a splash more olive oil.

Pork and veal lasagne at La Rosa The Strand in Sydney
Lasagne al fondo e finferli  $39.75
Pork and White Rock's veal lasagne with truffled chantarelle fondo bruno

For maximum richness, it's hard to go past the pork and veal lasagne. It's down the more expensive end of the menu at $39.75 but it's such a heavy dish, you'll probably want to share. The truffled chanterelle isn't really necessary but the white sauce. The melting puddle of cheese. The hearty meatiness. It's everything you want in a lasagna, enveloped between silky sheets of slippery pasta perfection.

Pizza bianco with zucchini flowers and lardo at La Rosa The Strand in Sydney
Fior e lardo Roman pizza $25.50
Pizza bianco, zucchini flowers, mozzarella, pecorino and lardo

Roman pizza? It differs from Neapolitan pizza with the inclusion of olive oil in the dough. This makes for a slightly stronger base that isn't quite as floppy as Neapolitan pizza. Ours is strewn with zucchini flowers, mozzarella and pecorino and shavings of luscious melting lardo.

Porchetta on a trolley at La Rosa The Strand in Sydney
Porchetta Castelli Romani

The porchetta is a thing of beauty, wheeled out on a trolley like a Roman god, complete with regal wreath. There are only four servings of this a day. We're the first customers to nab a portion.

Volcan rock spit roast porchetta at La Rosa The Strand in Sydney
Volcanic rock spit roast Golden Plains Ariccia-style porchetta with two sides $55

The porchetta is cooked spit roast-style over volcanic rocks. The flesh is super tender, encased in a perfectly bubbled sheath of golden crackling.

Green beans with burnt butter and toasted almonds at La Rosa The Strand in Sydney
Fagiolini (normally $14.50 but included with our porchetta)
Steamed green beans with burnt butter, toasted almonds and garlic

Two sides accompany our porchetta. We love the crunch of steamed green beans, amped up with burnt butter, garlic and toasted almonds.

Potatoes with rosemary, garlic and pork crackling at La Rosa The Strand in Sydney
Patata fritte (normally $14.50 but included with our porchetta)
Potatoes, rosemary, garlic and pork crackling

The fried potatoes are also a treat, a bowlful of crunch with garnished of deep fried garlic chips as well as pork crackling.

Porchetta crackling at La Rosa The Strand in Sydney
Dat crackling

Porchetta, pasta and pizza at La Rosa The Strand in Sydney
Buon appetito

We didn't have room for dessert but will definitely have to return for the zeppola potato doughnuts!

La Rosa The Strand by Pendolino in Sydney


La Rosa The Strand Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

La Rosa The Strand
The Strand Arcade
Level 2, 133/193 Pitt Street, Sydney
Tel: +61 (02) 9223 1674

Opening hours
Monday to Saturday 12pm-l1pm
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posted by Helen (Grab Your Fork) on 4/29/2018 05:03:00 pm


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