The elegant and intimate interior of Insieme Ristorante offers a blissful escape from the busy city centre where it is conveniently located. Meaning ‘together’ Insieme is just the place to gather with friends and family to experience refined Italian cuisine and friendly, efficient service. We sampled some of the dishes from the inspired spring menu that is bursting with clean and fresh flavours.
For our first course we selected the Quaglia. Two halves of char grilled quail presented on a bed of crispy cos lettuce and bitter radicchio. The quail meat was sweet and delicate. The dish was bound with a sweet balsamic vinaigrette and finished with macerated sour cherries. A simple dish of clean flavours that married well.
For the pasta course we went with the Papardelle Anitra. Shredded confit duck, tossed through hand-made thick ribbons of pasta with vegetables and cream. Spring vegetables of cauliflower, carrot, peas and celery brighten the earthy duck meat. On this occasion the pasta was cooked a little past al dente and the sauce retained some of this moisture causing it to be a tad runny. The melt in your mouth duck meat was the star of the dish.
From the Main Course offerings we enjoyed the Bisteca; a generous pile of sliced steak that retained a pink centre. Delicious on its own the steak is livened up by a collection of classic puttanesca ingredients; juicy capers, chilli, anchovy, garlic and fresh torn basil leaves. It’s a flavour explosion on the tender meat slices. With a side of baked kipfler potato the dish is a complete meal and great value at $34.
This was followed by the Polpo; a magnificent looking dish of marinated octopus tentacles that were cooked perfectly. They were immaculately paired with a herby salsa verde. Heavy on the parsley, the sauce complements the delectable octopus which has a slight smoky taste. Finished with a few discs of fondant potatoes which add substance; this is easily one of the best dishes I’ve eaten this year.
We tasted two of the four dessert options; Pere and Panna Cotta and both were delightful. The chocolate panna cotta molded into a rose was rich and mousse like. The slightly grainy texture does not take away from the chocolaty custard; a few berries and a dollop of mascarpone finish the dish.
A marsala poached pear is sweet and retains the delicate flavour of the fruit. Holding some bite and texture it is embedded in a gingerbread crumb and finished with a tease of butterscotch and piped mascarpone. The dish balances flavours that are both rich and delicate and I felt a warm glow while eating it.
We took a sneaky look at the breakfast menu during our visit and couldn’t help but order the Ricotta Pancakes. A tower of the fluffiest pancakes I have ever eaten, drizzled with a Canadian maple syrup. Perfectly golden, sweet and light I relished every bite of this dish and can’t wait to explore the rest of the Insieme breakfast menu after this preview.
Overall, we enjoyed our dining experience at Insieme. Reaching incredible heights with the Polpo this is a lunch I will be talking about for quite some time. I look forward to experiencing more offerings from this kitchen that clearly cooks with love.
If you are looking for an intimate venue to celebrate the Melbourne Cup Insieme are putting on a 3 course luncheon for $85. See their website for further details.
Words by Kate Wilkinson
WHERE: 63 Flinders St, Adelaide