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Bellissimo! An authentic Italian deli opens in Palm Beach

There are very few things in life better than a traditional pizza straight out of a woodfired oven and made with a whole lot of Italian love. Except maybe a smorgasbord of cheeses and also handcrafted pasta topped with all of the Parmesan. Actually, we love them all equally.

Which is why it absolutely warms our hearts to bring you news of a brand new Italian deli that recently opened in Palm Beach by people whose work you already know and love.

It’s Pepé Italia Deli by yes, the team who gifted us Burleigh’s Pepé Italia in early 2017, so you know it’s going to live up to your highest expectations.

The newbie can be found in Palmy’s brand new refurbished shopping precinct Pavilions, on the highway and it’s the first restaurant to open its doors there. With street frontage, plenty of natural light and happy Italians scattered throughout, it’s a place you’re going to want to spend a bit of time.

Inside you’ll find cabinets filled with a variety of cheeses and dried meats (both local and imported form Italy) and fridges packed with homemade pasta and pre-prepared meals like lasagna and meatballs (oh my) you can take home and pretend you made. Which is exactly what we’re going to do.

The deli is a more casual, pared back version of the Burleigh restaurant but the dishes on offer are quite similar.

On the Antipasti menu, everything was a taste sensation but we particularly loved the Wagyu Bresaola with Wagyu beef, shaved parmigiano, reggiano, rocket and lemon juice – so so tasty.

Pasta-wise, everything is made in-house and while you should probably sample every single dish, we were quite partial to the Ricotta e Spinaci with spinach and ricotta, agnolotti, butter, sage and parmesan cheese and Paccheri Positano with clams, mussels, baby calamari, prawns, barramundi, cherry tomatoes and Napoli sauce. Both absolutely stunning.

In terms of pizza, you obviously can’t go wrong especially where Pepé Italia is concerned. If we had to choose one, it would be the Tropea with San Marzano tomato, fresh buffalo mozzarella, prawns, basil, garlic and chilli. Very fresh and very delicious.

Let’s not forget the desserts and if you’ve ever had an Italian dessert you’ll know they cannot be skipped. There’s homemade Tiramisu, Cannoli Siciliana and Semi Frozen Dark Chocolate to name a few and they’re the perfect accompaniment to a pizza and pasta feast (obviously).

Of course there isn’t a single thing on the menu we would eat over and over again so choose your own adventure and prepare to be wowed.

If you’d like a little tipple to go with your experience, all your favourite cocktails are on offer as well as beer and wine of both the Australian and Italian persuasions.

Pepé Italia Deli

Perhaps the best news of all though is Sunday Apertivo – a tradition in Italy where everyone gathers on a Sunday afternoon for drinks and the venue provides the food. Which is exactly what’s going to happen at Pepé Italia Deli every Sunday. It’s the Italian version of a Sunday session and everyone’s invited.

Perfection has moved into Palm Beach Gold Coasters, get down there for some good old fashioned hospitality.

LOCATION: Pavilions Palm Beach, 10 Fifth Avenue, Palm Beach
HOURS: 11am until late Wednesday to Saturday and 11am until 8pm Sunday

Words and photos by Kirra Smith

Pepè Italia

Authentic Italian food is a rare luxury in Burleigh Heads, or it was, until the arrival of Pepé Italia.

Connor Streets’ latest eatery is owned and operated by three friends (one a chef) all of whom moved to Australia three years ago from northern Italy. Sounds good so far, right?

Using traditional recipes handed down from Nonna, the menu is filled with all the Italian dishes you know from arancini to homemade gnocchi, but there are a few lesser well known dishes that will have you preaching ‘Viva Italia’.

For entrée, don’t go past the house specialty Olive All’ascolanaa – green olives filled with pork, beef and chicken then crumbed a fried. As if the tangy goodness of olives wasn’t enough, now they’re stuffed and fried. Mouthfuls of salty perfection.

Prepare to have your mind blown by Spaghetti Alla Positano in Crosta di Pizza – a mouthful in more ways than one. It’s calzone cooked in the pizza oven filled with spaghetti and Napoli sauce, cherry tomatoes, prawns, calamari, clams, mussels and parsley. Even the biggest eaters will struggle with this one.

Make room for the Pepé, this is the pizza of choice made on a truffle puree base and topped with fior di latte (a soft Italian cheese), porcini mushrooms, sausage, rocket, Parmesan cheese and evo oil. It’s all your truffle dreams come true on a pizza.

An all-Italian beverage menu offers the original red Peroni (who knew) and imported soft drinks all the way from northern Italy to your grateful tastebuds.

Every minute detail has been taken care of to ensure an entirely Italian experience. Open for lunch and dinner, prepare yourself for a feast.

Bellissimo!

HOURS: Daily from 8am to 10pm

LOCATION: 11 Connor Street Burleigh Heads

Words and photos by Kirra Smith.

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