The La Pegna sisters, Annabella and Victoria, alongside their father Albasio La Pegna (owner of Bellissimo Restaurant) are opening Bottega Deli in a storied Claremont site.
“This was once our neighbourhood deli! We grew up around the corner and have memories of visiting to get lollies and treats,” Victoria tells Broadsheet. “To be able to open our first deli in the same location is amazing.”
Bottega Deli pays homage to the traditional and tasty Italian cuisine of Naples. Patriarch Albasio, has experience running Italian eateries in Perth, and Victoria has worked at Red Cabbage and had years of cooking alongside her father at Bellissimo. Between them they will craft a menu that celebrates the simplicity of Italian cooking.
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“This has been a dream of ours for quite some time. Our family all love cooking and we grew up in the kitchen surrounded by food,” says Victoria. The food will be based on “cucina povera” – “peasant cuisine”. “It's a traditional style of Italian cooking [from] the rural regions and southern parts of Italy that focuses on simplicity… inexpensive ingredients that create flavourful, satisfying dishes, designed to be shared with family and friends.”
The deli’s display cabinet will have a range of pre-prepared options, including takeaway salads, and marinated and prepared vegetable side dishes, all made with an emphasis on fresh ingredients with minimal intervention. There will be a rotating range of pastas and paninis – think mortadella with buffalo mozzarella, giardiniera and Calabrian chilli, or prosciutto with tomatoes, roast capsicum and olives – all made with bread from Il Panino, an Italian baker in Beaconsfield. Desserts – including crunchy cannoli and creamy tiramisu – are all made in house and there’s Pascucci coffee to keep you caffeinated while you shop.
The deli has a retail section selling the family’s favourite artisanal products and the brands they use themselves. Think spicy hot cream peppers; dried Sicilian oregano; and olives stuffed with anchovies, peppers or lemon.
“[You can expect] olive oils, Zaini Milano chocolates and Martelli Pasta from Tuscany,” says Annabella. “We wanted customers to be able to pop in and be able to purchase quality ingredients for special occasions.” From the Italian playlist curated by local DJ Mitchell Benson to stringed chilli and garlic sourced from their Nonna’s garden, authenticity is key.
“This area has been missing something like Bottega Deli for decades, and we can’t wait to welcome everyone,” says Annabella.