Home / World News / Restaurant assessment: 1934 Ristorante. This delicious slice of yesteryear is the anchor of our own Little Italy

Restaurant assessment: 1934 Ristorante. This delicious slice of yesteryear is the anchor of our own Little Italy

My husband always wanted to live in North Perth because of the suburb’s rich multicultural history. Along with his people — the hardy and unforgiving Macedonians — the Croatians, Greeks and Italians have all brought much to the swampy slice of Whadjuk Noongar land.

The elderly Croatian couple across the road tell incredible tales of the the lives they once led far from Fitzgerald Street, and there are trees heavy with fat olives on almost every verge.

Ladies in knee-high stockings and widow’s black stroll (and hose) the sidewalks and a few gardens growing exotic fruits of the old country still flourish.

And, should we choose to embrace orthodoxy late in life, we have two Macedonian churches within walking distance.

But it’s another kind of place of worship I am more likely to take communion — one of the many restaurants and cafes in what has become something of a Little Italy.

Ristorante 1934
Camera IconAmanda gorged on the complimentary fried dough balls. Credit: Unknown/Supplied

We are yet to road test the newest addition, a slick-looking continental deli called La Mortazza (Roman for mortadella) and until recently, had been unwilling to return to the oldest: the WA Italian Club.

An awful experience several years ago when the restaurant was in a different guise left us burnt. But much has changed since then.

The online booking form showed no vacancies but a quick call secured us a table for a weekday lunch. There’s a TV show where people board a plane and get off to find themselves years in the future. We were not on that plane. Indeed the name is a nod to the year the club was established.

There was only one other woman in the place, and the youngest bloke looked around 60. Not that there’s anything remotely wrong with that, they just seem to have a demographic — for Friday lunch at least. Which brings us to balls. Warm, doughy, salty balls.

It’s not often you get something for nothing these days, and a complimentary dish of warm, chewy fried dough balls are quite the gift. “They’re very easy to make,” our server tells us. They’re also extremely easy to gorge on.

The room is a little like nonna’s formal living room, only much louder — some attempts at sound damping may have helped but the loud lunching lads make it a little hard to hear.

Though the crowd is older, the menu puts a contemporary spin on the classics.

Ristorante 1934
Camera IconRicotta with semi-dried tomatoes, mint pesto and house crackers was an elegant entree. Credit: Unknown/Supplied

Take charred occy legs that have been elevated by a barely there nduja marinade and laid out on a velveteen pumpkin puree ($22). This curious pairing is made even kookier by a sprinkle of crumbled amaretti biscuits. Hell, it works.

There’s a milky “fresh” ricotta with semi-dried tomatoes, a shmear of mint pesto and two “house crackers”, which are actually crostini ($16.50). We could have done with a couple more but there’s always the balls. It’s an elegant entree.

Not yet satisfied with our carb loading, we tore into the house made pasta. Tightly wound twirls of al dente trofie with asparagus sauce and spears and shards of speck and a sublime, rich Italian sausage ragu atop thick strands of bigoli (both $26) are rustic — and gigantic. The trofie was a trifle undersauced.

The restaurant’s eponymous pinot grigio, a collab with Margaret River’s Credaro ($35) is a well-priced quaffer. Staff are cheerful and attentive and apart from a couple of missteps, the experience was quite delightful.

The verdict

14.5/20

This delicious, quirky slice of yesteryear is the anchor of our own Little Italy.

1934 Ristorante

235 Fitzgerald Street, West Perth

Open Lunch, Wednesday-Friday; Dinner, Thursday-Saturday

Contact 9328 4104

Bookings Yes

About brandsauthority

Check Also

Kramaric double eliminates plucky Canada

Andrej Kramaric was on target twice as Croatia battled back from conceding an early goal …

%d bloggers like this: