As if The Grounds of Alexandria wasn’t enough, the industrial surrounds of Bourke Road in the 2015 post code are just getting busier and foodier by the day. Indeed, you can now do all your deli, gourmet and drygoods shopping here too, with import warehouse Casa Gusto rebranding, opening to the public and putting on a damn good show at their gourmet retail outlet Salt Meats Cheese.
They’ve been open to the public for a while, but the name change marks the launch of the warehouse space as a foodie emporium, which features a mozzarella lab where you can peer through a window and watch them make anything from creamy mozzarella to dulce de leche or stuffed olives.
The warehouse is packed full of gourmet items at wholesale prices, including Marrella candy-striped rainbow pasta, panettone and dried mushrooms. There’s a deli room in addition to the mozzarella lab, where you can pick up buckets of bocconcini. But they’re not done yet – there are two more labs set to join the crew any day now. Construction has begun on a pasta lab (focused on super grain pasta) and a gelato lab (using traditional recipes) that, with any luck, will be open by Christmas, while down the back of the warehouse, the finishing touches are being put on the meat curing room and restaurant, where you will be able to sit at the pink salt-topped bar (with room for around 10 lucky diners) and order fresh cut, cured meats from the 200 plus legs swinging from the ceiling.
“It’s going to be more a degustation place,” says Stefano De Blasi, whose family is behind the Casa Gusto brand. “You’ll come here and ask to try any kind. We go from 14 months (that’s the minimum by law that a Serrano can be aged) up to 24 months. We’ll offer any kind of feed: grain feed, nut feed, free-range. And they’re from everywhere – Spain and Italy and local as well.”
The salt used in the construction of the space as well as a specialised fan will aid in the curing process and the installation-style restaurant and bar will open on December 14. But for now, come and grab your flavoured salts, olive oils, vinegars and specialty grains, because if this isn’t a one-stop gourmet shop, then we don’t know what else you could possibly be after.
Salt Meats Cheese
41 Bourke Road, Alexandria
(02) 9690 2406
Daily 9am–6pm (Visit on Fri, Sat & Sun for cheese making)