Saturday, 3 May 2008

frattini restaurant

122 Marion St
Leichhardt NSW 2040

Phone (02) 9569 2997

Sydney is known in the food world for many things: amongst these are abundant fresh produce, and authentic food from around the world is at your doorstep. And with so many food establishments in such close proximity, you're often guaranteed a relatively honest price point to boot. Sydney-siders (myself included) have come to expect a certain standard when it comes to things such as service, quality produce, execution and price (these are my 'top 4' if you like). Not that we're a fussy bunch, but we're not pushovers either.

So it is seriously disappointing when restaurants try to pull the wool over customer's eyes when it comes to these 'top 4' tennants of good eating.

Frattini is a rather charming looking building located on Marion Street - one of Leichardt's main arteries when it comes to the lifeblood of food in the area. Upon entering, we had to wait at least 5 minutes, standing in the middle of the front dining room before we were even acknowledged. (I tend to minus points when I'm made to stand like a shag on a rock whilst the rest of the diners are thinking "What are they doing, just standing there?")

That aside, once we were seated and bread brought to the table, we found that we had neither plates nor cutlery to eat them with....were we to just break the bread and then whack it on the table...? Anyone..? Bueller..?

On to the main event. If you like your food:
a) over salted
b) dripping in oil
c) over-cooked or
d) smothered in so much cream you start to wonder if your heart will survive the meal
e) all of the above

Then you're in luck. Frattini might just be what you're looking for.

Food crimes abound in the entree course: Aside from taking delicately flavoured ingredients such as Zucchini flowers, and Sea Scallops and (figuratively) stomping all over them by drenching them in either too much oil or too much cream, the Poached Oyster Mushrooms in Chilli and Garlic resembled a filmy soup of overcooked mushrooms floating in a vat of oil.

Hoping for a more promising main course of Prawns Al Sugo (cooked in a tomato-based sauce), Grilled, Baby Barramundi, Veal Bosciola and Stuffed Veal Skewers, we waited for more than half an hour until these were served.

Suffice to say that I was rather surprised to find a child-sized wading pool-worth of oil sitting underneath the overcooked (though not devoid of taste) veal. The Barramundi itself, which should have been firm, was soft and melting in texture, not a good thing when the fish in question is by definition a firm-fleshed one (this is a sign of extended freezing).

To boot, this harrowing tale of bad food set us back over $250 for 5 people prompting some of us to wonder why we didn't just flush the cash down the toilet and saved the hassle.

Eat at your own peril. Do not pass go. Do not collect $1000.

-(thats a minus)5/10