In the early 90s, John Dib opened a little takeaway store on Blackburn Rd in Mt Waverley and called it Piccolino. Twenty-five years later, the place is still going strong. Just to clarify, when this place first became cool, a movie ticket cost like $6, Bill Clinton was President and REM were just hitting their straps. Puts it all in perspective, eh.
To celebrate their 25th anniversary, Piccolino has just undergone a massive revamp. The new space comes courtesy of award-winning Hachem Architects, and took four years to complete. When you rock up for dinner, you’ll see why. It’s a massive vaulted, barn-like structure, tapering away to infinity and seating up to 100 patrons, with a huge black-iron pizza oven smack bang in the middle. One part cathedral, two parts pizza parlour.
Despite being older than many of its customers, Piccolino’s Italian game is still Nonna-level strong. Dib STILL works in the kitchen, churning out authentic family recipes like Linguini Marinara with scallops, king prawns, calamari and mussels tossed with extra virgin, or a selection of wood-fired pizzas and smaller, family-style share plates. Don’t expect cutting-edge fusion here: this is old-school, Godfather-esque Italian. And it’s still bloody tasty.
If you haven’t been to Piccolino’s since you were a kid (or you just want to see what all the fuss is about) we recommend swinging by and checking out the new refurb. It’s one of a kind.