After traveling through Italy a couple of years ago, I developed a huge appreciation for traditional Italian food. What I love most about it is its simplicity and flavour. I remember visiting a local trattoria in the Tuscan hills and being invited to a nonna’s kitchen. She showed me the mushrooms and tomatoes she had freshly picked from the garden that day, ready to be whipped into a pasta dish that evening.
I am always on the look out for quality Italian style restaurants in Melbourne, and despite having lived in Melbourne on and off for a few years now, I had never visited Cecconi’s in Flinders Lane. So when fellow brunch friend and blogger, In Love With Brunch, invited me to join her there for breakfast I couldn’t wait.
With empty bellies and the need for caffeine we visited Cecconi’s early on a weekday morning to try their new spring menu. And of course catch up on our latest European travel adventures.
As far as Italian local trattorias go, Cecconi’s is far from it. The dining room is sleek, sexy and sophisticated, full of dark and bold tones, slightly lightened with glimmers of brass and marble. Seating is formal, with a nice mix of banquettes and black bentwood chairs. An open marble clad kitchen takes centre stage, where you can see the chefs busily at work. It’s the kind of place to go on a romantic date or a classy corporate lunch.
Like most Italian restaurants, family is at the heart of Cecconi’s. The Bortolotto family is famous in Melbourne for creating a succession of Italian restaurants. They particularly pride themselves in working with local producers to source organic produce and even grow home-grown vegetables from the family farm.
In true Italian style, the service was warm and friendly. We were instantly offered a much needed coffee upon arrival and a freshly squeezed blood orange juice full of flavour and tang.
To start, we enjoyed a hearty bowl of creamy porridge (substitute for my walnut allergy) and a dreamy looking bowl of granola laden with crunchy nuts and grains, coconut and dried fruit. Both were picture perfect bowls of deliciousness topped with edible flowers and fresh strawberries.
Of course no blogger breakfast is complete without some hand modelling and food styling.
The antipasto platter was a beautiful assembly of six mini dishes (if you could call them mini – they were rather large) paired with crispy sourdough. There’s a super fluffy scrambled eggs with a hint of parmesan, chunks of creamy avocado and the most beautifully marinated cherry tomatoes which literally popped with every mouthful. Fellow cheese lovers will adore their house-made ricotta and cubes of feta, a great pair with wafer thin pieces of Italian prosciutto.
Unfortunately it was just too large to get through it all but I loved the idea of a do it yourself kind of breakfast.
Breakfast is not yet available on weekends but on a weekday before work, Cecconi’s makes the perfect breakfast date!
Highlight – The antipasto breakfast platter – a DIY kind of breakfast option. Low light – The venue was lacking in atmosphere since it was so quiet.
Overall Rating 7/10 (Food 7/10, Service 9/10, Atmopshere 6/10, Value for Money 8/10).
A 61 Flinders Ln, Melbourne VIC 3000
T (03) 8663 0500