Pizza d’Asporto Essendon
D’asporto means “takeaway” in Italian. But you’ll feel like sticking around at this lively, family-run pizzeria – which serves up perfectly puffy pizzas, family-recipe pastas and antipasti, alongside mostly Italian wines. It’s run by husband and wife Claude and Antoinette Acquaro – who started Pizza D’Asporto from a takeaway window in Williamstown in 2013 – and their sons Anthony and Lorenzo.
To share, there are plenty of red- and white-based pizzas, from a classic margherita to another topped with king prawns, mozzarella, prosciutto and porcini mushrooms. The pizza dough – which Claude has finessed over decades – uses a house blend of Italian flours and is fermented for three days. The final base is somewhere between Roman- and Neapolitan-style, with the crispiness of the former and the puffiness of the latter.
While the pizza is the piece de resistance here (it’s helped the Acquaros expand from grab-and-go pizza to fully fledged restaurants in Williamstown, Yarraville and Essendon), there’s much more to the menu. Find pastas including a family-recipe casarecce in pork and fennel ragu, creamy lasagne and spicy amatriciana. Plus, salads that span classic caprese to a bright and acidic radicchio with fennel, gorgonzola and fig-vinegar dressing.
True to the Acquaro’s roots, the wine list is mostly Italian. You might see Vallevo Pecorino from Abruzzo, a buttery white that’s best paired with the white-based quattro formaggi pizza, or Vanita Nero D’Avola, a full-bodied Sicilian red that goes well with the ruby red salumi pizza. There are around 20 options by both the glass and bottle, all at affordable price points. You’ll also find cocktails – think sharp Italian classics like Americano and Negroni – alongside a handful of Italian beers.
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