Popular Breakfast Point food truck Dom Panino ditched its wheels in 2023 and opened an eatery in Leichhardt. And after only a few weeks it became a local hit for its panini loaded with Sicilian-inspired fillings.

As its name suggests, Dom Panino’s focus is nailing panini. Fillings here are simple combinations inspired by co-owner Dom Ruggeri’s childhood. Take, for example, the Nonna’s Nostalgia, which comes loaded with five-hour slow-cooked pork and veal bolognese, smoked fior di latte, parmesan and rocket.

Meanwhile, a couple of extra-saucy panini pay homage to New York. These include the Joey Vodka (chicken schnitzel, spicy sopressa, buffalo mozzarella, basil, vodka sugo) and the Porchetta-Bout-It (free-range slow-roasted pork, crackling, eggplant paste, pecorino cream, rocket and Kewpie chilli mayo).

The drinks list is all-Italian, including beers such as Peroni’s Gran Riserva range and Birra Baladin, a drop spiced with organic Calabrian bergamot and coriander. The seltzer collection includes Sicilian blood orange and limoncello versions, and the wine list focuses on Piedmont and Sicily, with various barolo wines by the glass.

Out the front, Dom Panino’s signature pink and black signage makes it hard to miss. The colour scheme continues at the custom-made bar, decked out in pink terrazzo tiles and topped with black stone. There’s a back room with a communal table for socialisers and outdoor seating for people-watchers. The day starts with vintage classics by Dean Martin and Elvis, before moving onto Italian disco later on. A dedicated booth hosts guest DJs on the weekends.

Sweet tooths should swing by on Saturday and Sunday mornings, when Ruggeri’s mum spends several hours frying sfinci (traditional Sicilian doughnuts) fresh to order. They come rolled in cinnamon and sugar, or covered in decadent toppings like pistachio and white chocolate.

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Updated: September 13th, 2023

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