When Da Orazio Pizza + Porchetta first landed in Bondi in 2014, it quickly became Sydney’s hottest new restaurant, known for outstanding woodfired pizzas, hulking rotisserie porchetta and good-looking, gregarious staff who were as stylish as the clientele.
It’s star chef, Orazio D’Elia sold out of the restaurant in 2018 and went on to open Matteo in Double Bay (and later one in the city). Business partner Maurice Terzini closed Da Orazio the following year, and replaced it with Cicciabella, which shut in 2021.
In 2022, D’Elia came full circle, returning to the pretty corner spot to open his own version of the bustling pizzeria and bar with the red door – but with a slight name change. Like the original, Da Orazio 2.0 simultaneously casual yet smart and chic, and has a fun anything-goes vibe. The space has an unassuming Italian beach-club look and feel, with plenty of natural light.
Old-school diners will recognise the grilled lamb skewers, the fregola pasta with seafood and the slow-roasted deboned free-range Berkshire pork that, when it’s finished cooking on the rotisserie for hours, takes pride of place on the marble kitchen bar.
One of Da Orazio’s signature dishes is also back: the Sydney-famous focaccia con porchetta. It’s made by taking slices of the rotisserie pork from Taluca Park, marinated grilled eggplant and crisp cos lettuce, and laying that pile between two pizza breads smeared with mayo and chilli.
Other dishes might include an Italian version of saganaki (asiago cheese sizzled in a hot pan with anchovies, confit tomato and olives) and mortadella slathered with a cacio e pepe sauce then crumbed and deep-fried. And it wouldn’t be an Italian restaurant without tiramisu.
Da Orazio has always known for its blistered puffy Neapolitan-style pizzas, but pizza chef Matteo Ernandes (also of the original restaurant) has perfected the biga-style fermentation process, which results in lighter, more digestible bases.
Like the original, Da Orazio encourages families to come for an early dinner seating, and there’s a succinct bambini menu that includes spag bol, simple pizzas and scoops of ice-cream.
For the adults there’s house wine for $8 and one-litre carafes for $50. There are also four types of Espresso Martini, White Russians and a cocktail devoted to Maurice Terzini.