Ben Cleary-Corradini owns Benfatti Italian Fine Foods, an online food importer. And Theo Roduner is owner and executive chef of Paddington’s Grappino restaurant. Earlier this week the duo opened Gnocchi Gnocchi Brothers, Australia’s very first dedicated gnoccheria, after running a market stall of the same name since May 2015.
Made fresh on the premises, the team goes through more than 100 kilograms of Tasmanian Dutch cream and Désirée potatoes per day. The gnocchi comes with a choice of house-made sauces: wild mushroom and truffle; traditional, slow-cooked bolognese; spicy cherry tomato and black olive; fresh prawns and cherry tomato; slow-cooked duck ragú; and Genovese-style pesto. Served alongside is ciabatta, perfect for mopping up left-overs. At $12 a pop, it’s a steal.
Aside from the house specialty, there’s a short selection of starters and sides – thick-cut chips, deep-fried, mince-stuffed olives and caprese salad. Desserts feature a traditional vanilla-bean panna cotta, Sicilian ricotta cannoli and house-made tiramisú.
Cleary-Corradini and Roduner want to be clear: it’s a “gnoccheria”, not a “restaurant”. “If you call it a restaurant, people expect restaurant service.” Cleary-Corradini says. “We’re about a fast, friendly, cheap eats. We’re a gnocchi bar, a new thing.”
Located on Given Terrace, Gnocchi Gnocchi Brothers is a small space with just 30 seats, offering a choice of dine-in or takeaway. The interior is simple: white walls, black chairs, wooden floorboards and a stained counter for ordering.
For the moment, the gnoccheria is BYO but Cleary-Corradini and Roduner have lodged a liquor license application with an intention to serve Italian beers and wines. The other thing to look forward to in the new year: monthly gnocchi masterclasses with lunch and wine included. Bravo.