A must try for every Italian food loving person? I would say so. Ever since I moved to Perth I was having a hard time finding a good italian restaurant. This was until my friend brought me to Ciao Italia in South Perth.
The first time I dined here the restaurant was only half its current size sitting about 30 people max with some tables just outside the toilets and hardly any floor space to walk on. Today they have expanded. It is now twice the original size bigger but still leaving just enough space for you to squeeze yourself in while taking care not to whack people’s heads with your handbag.
For the past 4 years that I’ve been coming here 2 things have always remained consistent: food and service. They have a loyal staff – charming Italian men who makes you feel very welcomed as soon as you step into the restaurant. And food? Well the taste has not changed and I’m thankful for that. I frequently order the “Fettucini Ciao Italia” because it is very very tasty. I don’t even bother counting the calories anymore because I would just die of guilt. It is a big plate of fettucini with chicken and sundried tomatoes in a tomato and cream sauce. Taste wise it is heavenly. Health wise it is probably not a good idea to eat the whole plate by yourself, especially when you are on a diet. Try microwaving this the next day when you have leftovers and you will see the sauce turn into melted butter. So much so that I have to drain the “butter” before I actually eat it. Draining the “butter” will not affect the taste though so no need to worry. I always share this with a friend to leave room for pizza and dessert.
Sitting in a small table surrounded by big and small plates alike plus a watter bottle plus salt and pepper shakers, there’s virtually no room left for that pizza that my friend and I always get, “Chilli King Prawn Pizza”. My friend has to have everything hot and spicy so this is the perfect pizza for her. I don’t mind chilli so it’s good for me as well. Thin crust with banana prawns smothered in creamy melted cheese. This is good enough to stop your heart too but it is very delectable.
Half a plate of pasta and 2 slices of pizza later I am already as full as one can be. But I never leave Ciao Italia without having my fix of “Tiramisu” no matter how full I am. People say that this is the best tiramisu in Perth. I would agree if they’d only make it with less cheese mixture. The dessert in itself is really good – sponge fingers dipped in coffee that is not too bitter layered with smooth mascarpone cheese that is of just the right sweetness finished off with dusting of cocoa powder with the whole cake sitting on a puddle of cream. The only problem with it is there is too much cheese. You get filled very easily after a few bites.
The popularity of this place is evidenced by the queue forming outside the restaurant. No reservations here so to get a seat without waiting you have to be at the door by 5pm or earlier to give your name to the waiters before they actually open. The last time I was here with my friend we came at 5pm, got a seat, first ones to be served our food, and we finished dinner by 6pm. Half an hour later and you would find yourself waiting for as long as 2 hours just to get a table (which was what happened to us when I came with a group of 8-10 people at 5:30pm).
My rating: 7.5/10