Leo Gelsomino has realised a long-held goal by moving into what was Yak Bar and turning it into Yak Bar Pasta Artigiana. Gelsomino was the head chef at The Grand in Richmond, known for its authentic Italian menu and has joined forces with ongoing Yak Bar owners Linda and Mark Durnan and a colleague from The Grand, former chef Chris McIntyre.
The opening of the Yak Bar Pasta Artigiana has not only brought Gelsomino’s skill to the city but also put it in a casual, easy environment. The place opens at 7am so you can get a pastry and coffee first thing but lunchtime is when the pasta starts to weave its way out of the kitchen. You can grab a quick bowl of pasta (say, a simple penne with veal and porcini ragu) at the bar or commit to something longer and try the salumi plate, some grilled mushrooms on focaccia or house-made sausage and then think about negotiating some pasta.
We’re loving the lemon and potato agnolotti with pecorino and sage sauce and with nearly all the pasta made in house - with stoneground flour produced in Melbourne - the texture is a standout. If you can’t find your favourite type of pasta just yet, the menu will have up to 10 dishes on rotation, so it’s worth persisting.