5 May 2014
The 40km/h speed limit driving into Vic Park slows me down, but not enough to notice any restaurants before passing by Big Bowl Noodle. An awesome 50% online discount lured me to Bravo’s which I have probably driven past a hundred times without noticing.
It’s definitely a family-friendly spot but they dimmed the lights just after we arrived. People are so strange and easily confused by low illumination: the more classy the restaurant, the less you can see your friends or food. We ordered mains and a couple of drinks because it was Friday night - hashtag yolo (hashtag am I doing that right? hashtag hashtags are ridiculous).
Vasse cabernet merlot ($11.50); Champagne mojito ($10.50)
The house speciality is a mojito made from champagne, which is sweeter and more bubbly than the regular rum-based concoction. I enjoyed my beverage but you ain’t fooling anyone by loading a huge glass with ice cubes! My fancy-pants dining companion sipped his red wine like a king and seemed to enjoy himself.
Spaghettini meatballs ($26.50)
If you have an Asian mother, then you might feel my pain and understand why pasta with mince is often one of the worst meals ever (anyone keen for 500g beef mince + Dolmio + raw garlic chunks?). Thankfully, I forced myself out of my comfort zone with the otherwise completely innocuous spaghetti meatball dish. I loved the huge serving of flavoursome and juicy veal and pork meatballs, al dente pasta, and rich napoletana tomato sauce. We also got offered cracked pepper and shaved parmesan, ummm yes!!
Lamb rump ($36.50)
I forget how awesome sheep taste. This enormous lamb rumb was tender and cooked to a lovely medium-rare. The Witch’s Cauldron could learn a lesson or two from Bravo’s about how to properly prepare lamb. Black lentils were swimming about in the rich meaty flavours underneath. A small handful of fresh spinach and a few sweet potato slivers didnt fool us: this meal is strictly for meat-lovers.
The sundae ($12.50)
Who can resist a dessert with popping candy? It is one of the most memorable moments of my first date night (aside from the lovely face sitting opposite me). Greenhouse served up an amazing dessert with a tonne of popping candy. This sundae was far less fancy and had less popping candy, but look at the serving size! We devoured the vanilla bean ice cream while fighting for the spoonfuls of warm chocolate sauce. Fresh mango would have improved things substantially, but we enjoyed this nonetheless.
Service was friendly and attentive, plus the manager checked that we enjoyed our meal and wanted genuine feedback (despite our “coupon diner” status hehe). Our meal would normally have cost about $50pp including an alcoholic drink each. If you just ordered pizzas and pastas (skipping the booze), you would happily feed yourself for under $30. Bravo’s has good food at a reasonable price, which is pretty unusual for Italian restaurants along Albany Highway.
Likes: spaghetti meatballs (to my surprise!), menu options for most budgets
Dislikes: tinned mango is never as good as fresh mango
Value for money: average
Overall: worth a visit if you have a hankering for modern Italian food
933 Albany Highway
(08) 9361 6055