Ask any Italian how they like their pizza and they’ll tell you: fresh ingredients made with love and a big chunk of passion! And that’s exactly what you’ll find from the crew at il.tavo, who have already scored themselves a bit of a rep when it comes to dishing up pizzas with traditional flavour and a whole lotta taste.
Since opening its doors six months ago in Nunawading, il.tavo has been busy serving up some of Melbourne’s best pizzas to the masses. Maybe it’s because this clan of over-zealous pizza-maker extraordinaires are passionate about what they do, or perhaps it’s because they’re one of the only Italian restaurants in Melbourne to be using a special type of pizza oven imported all the way from Italy! Trust us, this baby is one-of-a-kind and guarantees the perfect blend of doughiness to crispiness essential for the perfect pizza.
All of il.tavo’s dishes are used using only fresh seasonal ingredients; everything from the meat to the vegies are sliced and prepared in-house, while the sauces are prepared daily by the team of talented chefs. And believe me, it shows. The best part? il.tavo are happy to accommodate variations to the menu, so if there’s something you don’t like, just let the team know and they’ll be happy to help! No snobby wait staff here, folks.
The huge il.tavo menu is chockers with a mouth-watering selection of pizza and pasta dishes, all made to be shared and enjoyed over a conversation with friends or family, just like the Italians do. BUT, if you want to enjoy a dish all to yourself, that’s completely fine, too, because pretty much all the dishes at il.tavo come in two sizes. Pretty convenient hey? Especially if there’s a mammoth pizza-eater in your family who wants to eat everything before you’ve even sat down. You know the guy...
Speaking of pizza, we love love loved the Prosciutto, topped with fior di latte, prosciutto, rocket, cherry tomato and parmesan – so good! Traditionalists will love the simplicity of the Margherita made with imported Italian mozzarella, basil and olive oil. Warning: this baby is super cheesy and there’s no way you’ll be able to leave any behind!
For something a little spicy, Diavola is the way to go, topped with fior di latte, chilli AND hot salami. Your mouth will be on fire, but this one is definitely one of our il.tavo faves! And leaf eaters will go nuts for the Ortolana, made with fresh seasonal veggies like eggplant, zucchini, roast capsicum and mushroom – Mmmm!
For the pasta fans, we recommend the Rigatoni All'Amatriciana made with Napoli sauce, pancetta, red wine and Spanish onion. Make sure you polish this one off with a nice glass of Pinot Noir from Yering Station – the perfect pairing in our humble opinion.
If you’ve got an appetite for something more fancy, the osso buco is melt-in-your-mouth delicious, cooked in a red wine and Napoli sauce and dished up on a bed of creamy, dreamy mashed potato. Swoon. The pork belly is another winner, served with apple puree, pickled onions and beetroot.
There’s also a whole stack of entrée sized Italian dishes, like the yummy pot of mussels in a rich tomato and chilli broth served with crusty bread, or the antipasti platter for two containing everything from eggplant to sundried tomatoes, olives, prosciutto, salami and more. We told you the menu was big!
Whatever you do, make sure you leave room for dessert. Specifically, il.tavo’s famous dessert pizza. This indulgent, calorific concoction features layers upon layers of rich Nutella, topped with a tonne of fresh, sweet strawberries. You’ll be dreaming about this miraculous invention long after you leave the Mooroondah Highway – that’s a promise.
il.tavo is one suburban pizza joint worth discovering for yourself, Listers. Open seven days a week for lunch and from Wednesday to Sunday for dinner, grab a table inside or dine in the front courtyard to lap up the sunshine during the warmer months. Buon appetite!
TUL Note: Today's List Love post is proudly sponsored by il.tavo and endorsed by The Urban List. Our sponsored posts will never be a secret — the List Love seal will be stamped on any sponsored material you see on the site. Thank you for supporting the sponsors who make The Urban List possible.
Image Credit: Simon Shiff for The Urban List