Bar Idda, East Brunswick

Bar Idda is a classic Sicilian restaurant located on Lygon Street, the main Italian drag in Melbourne. The setting is no fuss and comfortable, with smiling service that immediately puts you at ease. The menu is designed for sharing, and the four of us visiting did just that. We started with marinated green olives, arancino and savoury zeppoles- out of these the zeppole were probably the table favourite. The little doughnuts were light and fluffy, and filled with a delicious mixture that was lightly flavored with anchovy. We then moved onto spaghetti with mussels and an almond-San Marzano pesto. The dish was simple yet effective, and the tomato-based pesto was certainly unique; we also found the pasta itself to be lovely, the way only housemade pasta can be. The next dish out was one of the strangest dishes I’ve ever experienced- fresh zucchini and chilled cucumber topped with a tomato sorbet; we were obviously intrigued by the menu description, and were not disappointed when the dish arrived! The sorbet is meant to be mixed through the zucchini and cucumber mixture before eating- this unique dish was incredibly refreshing and absolutely delightful, and one I would definitely go back for. The housemade fennel and pork sausage was good- “nothing special” in Alex’s words, and definitely topped by the following dish- pan-fried almond crusted fish topped with salsa verde. This fish was a showstopper, and I think we all wished that we had ordered one each instead of sharing! The fish was tender, the batter crisp and the salsa verde perfectly balanced- one of the best fish dishes that I’ve had in recent memory. The capunata, our last side dish, was more tomatoey than I would expect from a capunata, but still enjoyable. We finished the meal with a slice of cassata- ricotta layered with soaked sponge and dotted with dried fruits and chocolate, all topped with marzipan. The cake was moist and delicious, highly recommended if you’re into very sweet desserts. We were the last customers at Bar Idda, and we left full and content, pleased with the homey food and service, and probably all wishing for one last piece of fish.

– priya

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Alivi cunzati‐ preserved green olives, extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, parsley

DSC_0904Arancino‐ mixed mushroom, Sicilian oregano, fontina cheese

DSC_0907Zeppole‐ potato, parsley, sultana and anchovy doughnuts, salmoriglio

DSC_0908Trapanese‐ house made spaghetti, Tasmanian mussels, almond and San Marzano pesto, basil  

DSC_0911Insalata crudo‐ New season zucchini, chilled salted cucumber, Sicilian green olive, strattù sorbet  

DSC_0912Salsiccia‐ house made pork and fennel sausage, red wine glaze

DSC_0915Pisci ‘mpanattu‐ pan fried almond crusted fish, salsa verde 

DSC_0916Capunata‐ relish of pickled eggplant, tomato, caper, green olive, sesame seed, almond, herbs  

DSC_0920Cassata‐ layered ricotta cake, soaked sponge, chocolate, cherries, marzipan 

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