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5.336 Aussie Pizza

-Cycle 5, Item 336-
7 (Sun) December 2014

-Australian-
Aussie Pizza

3.25

at Topolinos

-St Kilda, Melbourne-

solo

Mission to Australia, Day 2 (see previously 5.335 Chicken Taosi).

Details to be explained in a future post, I'm in Melbourne, where I'll be participating in a workshop for the duration of the coming week.

Arrived this morning.

Post hotel check-in, just past 10:00, few eateries were open in the immediate area, except for a fish & chips / burger joint across the street.  Not an ideal choice for my first meal down under, but good enough under the circumstances.

 
Skwidz: although it did seem rather appropriate, from what I've heard about Australian dietary habits.

I ordered a chicken kebab wrap to illustrate Australia's highly vaunted multi-culturalism; while the photo doesn't adequately convey scale, the wrap was absurdly enormous, mostly fresh lettuce and tomato, which is a good thing.

Topolinos is an Italian restaurant.  Specializes in pizza: standard crust, wood-fired, from traditional to modern topping combinations.  Decent selection of pastas, steaks, seafoods.  Casual, family atmosphere.  Mid-range prices.  Founded in 1973, something of a local landmark.  Located on Fitzroy Street, in St Kilda, a couple blocks west of the St Kilda tram station.  Current ranking on TripAdvisor: 21 of 175 restaurants in St Kilda.

Coincidentally, Topolinos lies two doors down from Skwidz.


Among the vast array of pizza variations available here, the one that could arguably be regarded as the most local would involve boiled eggs and bacon.   Not necessarily called "Aussie Pizza" (as here), sometimes "Brekkie (breakfast) Pizza."

I love eating/drinking something bearing the name of the place in which I'm eating/drinking it (see also pizza below).

Garlic Prawns (2.5)--sautéed in creamy garlic sauce, with rice and salad; not too bad, if unimaginative.

Chilli Calamari (3.75)--grilled with chili and garlic, served with garlic mayonnaise; near perfection, just a tad too spicy for my tastes, but otherwise perhaps the best squid dish that I've ever experienced; the clear highlight of the meal (but I'm featuring the pizza because of the "Aussie" thing).

The food was excellent.  I certainly hadn't planned on eating pizza for my first dinner in Australia, but the "Aussie" label made it irresistible (see also beer above).  The squishy eggs, providing textural contrast to the crispy crust, worked quite well.  As for the seafood, both dishes confirmed what I've always imagined Australian food would be like: fresh, simply prepared, primarily western in style, with international influences, tasty.  I look forward to reconfirming the theory throughout the week.

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