After debuting at RCC last year, Roberta’s returns to the University of Adelaide grounds in 2020, rebadged as Roberta’s Italian Disco Diner.
Moving out of the campus cafeteria, which is now home to the Adelaide UniBar, Roberta’s (no relation to the famous Brooklyn pizza joint) will be situated in the piazza-like Cloisters of Union House. The 150-person-capacity al fresco eatery will feature a walk-in wine room and a salumeria slicing and plating up fresh cuts for diners.
“The Cloisters area is beautiful,” Roberta’s founder and RCC Fringe director Roberto Cardone said in a press release. “It reminded me of walking through the porticoes in Bologna, so it made sense to set up Roberta’s here and take advantage of the entire space, giving patrons the opportunity to enjoy a dish or two or three, have a drink and dance.”
The reincarnation comes with another addition: Cardone has reunited with Adelaide chef and long-time friend Salvatore Pepe, who’ll be plating up classic, uncomplicated Italian dishes. The pair co-founded Cibo Ristorante and Cibo Espresso before selling the business in 2012.
“It’s been an absolute dream to work alongside Salvatore Pepe again. We’re back doing what we do best – serving up authentic Italian food and having fun while doing just that,” Cardone said.
Roberta’s melanzane parmigiana (lightly battered eggplant slices layered with tomato sugo, mozzarella, Parmigiano and basil) and paccheri al ragù (large paccheri pasta with “Nonna’s slow-cooked tomato sugo” and beef ragu) – a crowd-favourite last year – will return to the menu alongside some of Pepe’s dishes such as fichi, (prosciutto-wrapped figs baked with gorgonzola sauce) and taglierini al granchio (egg pasta tossed with blue swimmer crab, chilli, tomato and a dash of cream).
Cardone’s southern Italian heritage was the inspiration behind the casual eatery, which features red and white checkered tablecloths and fiasco wine bottles, family-friendly vibes, and DJs spinning disco tracks into the night.
The walk-in wine room will provide diners with local and imported Italian reds, whites and prosecco. Cocktails will include Negronis and Aperol Spritzes, plus the venue’s signature Hugo, consisting of prosecco, elderflower, seltzer & mint leaves.
The venue's introducing a booking system this year – diners are now welcomed (and encouraged) to book an early dinner before a show or enjoy a late-night bite post entertainment. Bookings can be made via Open Table.
Roberta’s will be open Tuesdays to Sundays from 5pm till late. Roberta’s is a cashless venue.