Rococo Italian With The Extra Touches
Rococo is a stylish Italian restaurant in St Kilda that delights with it's quality cuisine and extra little touches. There's a foodie culture here where much thought and flair goes into each course and the menu has broad appeal. I'd call it rustic cuisine with French and Italian influences. We were surprised by the size of the weeknight crowd here; Rococo is a popular haven for romantics, groups, families and single diners.
The World Loves Melbourne was invited to imbibe the Italian flair that is Rococo in Acland St St Kilda, noting Rococo has other venues in Fitzroy St St Kilda as well as Hawthorn.
Rococo has a modern, spacious and stylish fit out with attractive artwork and decor. You can stretch out here and relax, unlike some other restaurants where diners are crowded in.
Rococo doesn't post its menu on their website, and fair enough. For mine, Rococo serves up the usual suspects of Italian cuisine, done extremely well. We enjoyed the first course of Bruschetta with goats cheese.
Rococo is a strong wine haven with quality Nebiolo and Reserve Chianti on offer... All of the wine we enjoyed was decanted - the little touches.
The Charcuterie plate was a highlight with quality creamy Prosciutto and Pumpkin Polenta...
The Housemade Tortellini with chicken broth was spectacular and rustic. You can taste the difference where pasta is house made - the pasta and sauces are all made on site at Rococo.
A popular dish at Rococo is the Prawn spaghetti with garlic, oil, spinach and chilli. The standout was the smoky flavour of the pasta with the veloute. As my friend Mark commented, many restaurants serve prawns which seem separate and incongruous to the pasta - and just toss it all together. At Rococo there is a blending of flavours and the veloute is a key. The little touches.
Another great touch is the "one pasta, one pan" policy. While some restaurants serve up 2 or 3 dishes from the one pan, Rococo serves up each dish from its own pan.
This is the sort of restaurant you want to take your family to with its broad appeal. But Rococo is a step up from "family restaurant type" cuisine.
Rococo also delivered with this Risotto Confit Duck, creamy and full of flavour. As with any risotto, rococo take their time with the stock - the little touches. Harmony with freshness. Rococo age their own meats - the sirloin for 8 weeks.
Rococo boasts outstanding staff with Ash the sommelier totally engaging and knowlegeable from the start. His wine and food matching for the night was superb. Ash started on a great note by pouring a barrel strength Nikka whisky for my friend Mark in the opening minutes. Barrel strength, for goodness sake.
Rococo has a super large kitchen with a large team - they need it because weekends are jam packed, and weeknights not far behind.
Rococo are also known for their quality steak cuts. Normally they serve up the steak whole but we shared this dish with slices of sirloin and delightful sides of salad and crunchy potatoes.
Dessert was also a highlight with Ice cream on a milk chocolate soil, cheesecake and drunken cherries.
Rococo also sell loads of pizza. This is one versatile restaurant with consistency of quality despite a wide ranging menu.
The World Loves Melbourne had a great night at Rococo and was super impressed. Highly recommended