La Trattoria Italian Restaurant

346 King William Street, Adelaide
Phone: (08) 8231 5858

Little slice of Italy in Adelaide.

La Trattoria, King William Road Adelaide (the Glenelg tram stops right outside) was established in 1975 by brothers Andy and Chris Parisi, the boys are from Sicily so the main cuisine of the restaurant is from Southern Italy. Over the years the family business has catered to many famous clientele. One entire wall is covered in photos of the boys with the likes of Mick Jagger, John Farnham, Tom Jones, The Eagles, not to mention many of our well known personalities. During our time there, Andy recapped a story of when he refused entry to Bon Jovi, who was looking for an Italian restaurant and was refused entry because he and his band mates wore singlets and had tattoos, and fortunately they were allowed in and have since returned with friends.

It is normal practice to end a meal with a nice coffee; however I could not wait and started with a delicious Di Bella coffee. Di Bella is available at many venues in Adelaide, if you are a coffee lover I highly recommend you seek out this delicious, smooth flavoured coffee.

How do I describe this restaurant to you? I would say it is quite unique for Adelaide; it is like entering a little bit of Italy, quaint, with little nooks and crannies everywhere lending itself to many a romantic meal whilst giving off a lovely Italian vibe.  The prices are reasonable, the service more than adequate. I have been here a few times and every time I step in the door I get a sense of comfort and anticipation for the amazing food I am about to eat.

La Tratt, as it is affectionately known, is the only restaurant in Adelaide that is open late, even if the doors are closed. If you knock on the door at 11ish or sometimes even 12ish the door will be opened and the kitchen will still be functioning. Many sports people call in late especially when interstate games are on or The Tour Down Under, Andy is very proud that he is able to cater to their needs.

We didn’t order our own meal this time, instead we left it up to the boys, and we were not disappointed. First up was a Bruschetta Monte Bianco with tomato, garlic, basil, bocconcini and virgin olive oil. Everything on this dish was beautiful and fresh with the flavours blending together as only the Italians can do, beautifully presented with colour and artistic flair.

Next up was Andy’s Marinara Fresh Seafood the winner of “Best Gourmet Pizza” competition (South Australia, Australia and then New York). Wow, I couldn’t wait, this pizza must be pretty good!!! Sooooo tasty – a crispy thin base with lots of fresh basil and seafood – not those little canned things, but big juicy tasty prawns, and lots of them. I can see why they won the competition, it was absolutely yummy.

We still had three more meals to go! Next was the Spinach Gnocchi with Sundried Tomato and Mascarpone Cheese, this was not my favourite but it was my associates fave, she couldn’t get enough of it. The gnocchi was cooked with garlic, sliced bacon, sundried tomato, basil, black pepper, parmesan cheese and virgin olive oil. The gnocchi was green because of the spinach, very interesting and very appealing to look at.

Two to go and my fave next, Spaghetti Marinara, my very favourite pasta ever. I am the marinara queen and I was not disappointed. Scallops, fresh LARGE prawns, calamari, mussels and tomato, I think maybe the best marinara I have ever had, I could not believe the amount and size of the prawns, if you like marinara try it at La Tratt you won’t be disappointed, the flavour is out of this world!

Last but not least Spaghetti Bolognese. The boys were obviously very proud of their Bolognese, voted the best Bolognese, Grace (the chef) has been with La Tratt for 34 years and still going strong. By this time we had eaten a lot but we were looking forward to this Bolognese as the boys had talked about it so much and Grace had come to the table to meet us. This humble traditional meal was just as you would expect to be cooked on a cold night in a Sicilian kitchen by the woman of the house. Earthy, traditional and very homely with an authentic flavour of Italy, cooked with lean beef and traditional herbs. Very satisfying!!!! Our meal complete, I have a yen for another Di Bella coffee to top it off. A perfect ending to a perfect meal………

By Lynne Gage