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Rocco's Is Fitzroy's New Takeaway-Only Sandwich Spot and Deli Hidden Behind a Boarded-Up Shopfront

This unapologetically kitsch sanga pop-up is serving meatball subs, bone marrow garlic bread and merch shirts.
By Cordelia Williamson
April 16, 2020
By Cordelia Williamson
April 16, 2020

It mightn't be the perfect time to open up a restaurant, but one Melbourne chef has done it anyway, launching a brand-spanking-new sandwich shop and deli on Gertrude Street. Chef Josh Fry (Marion and Cumulus Inc) was originally meant to be the head chef at a new dine-in restaurant and bar set to open in the Fitzroy space over the Easter long weekend, but plans swiftly shifted when restaurants, bars and cafes had to close their doors in a bid to contain COVID-19. So, instead, Fry opened the unapologetically kitsch pop-up, Rocco's Bologna Discoteca.

The Italian-inspired menu features an epic lineup of sangas. There's a saucy NY-style meatball sub; Rocco's Originario Bologna with fried bologna (a mortadella-like meat), green olives and plenty of cheese; the spicy Picante, featuring fried bologna, pickles and provolone; a vegetarian crumbed eggplant one; and the Bobby Baccala, which is a salted cod melt.

Other dishes include bone marrow garlic bread, antipasto platters, pine mushroom lasagne, a Chook Foot cacciatore and ricotta cavatelli with chicken, sugo and peppers. There's also Rocco's Dinner Box, which includes one sandwich per person, salumi, olives, Sardinian-style flatbread, salad, fries and tiramisu and is available for two ($65) or four ($85) people.

As Rocco's is also a deli, you can pick up freshly baked bread, eggs, house-made pastas, Nonna's red sauce, Mt Zero olives, cured meats, tins of sardines and, of course, heaps of cheese, too. Plus, you can buy a Rocco's t-shirt, should you need some new WFH threads.

You can either pop down to pick up the goods in person or, if you're an inner north local, you can get them delivered for free. You can check out the full menu and order via Rocco's website. Otherwise, you can get it delivered through DoorDash.

Rocco's Bologna Discoteca is located at 81–83 Gertrude Street, Fitzroy and is open from 5–10pm Wednesday–Friday, 12–10.30pm Saturday and 1–7pm on Sunday. 

Published on April 16, 2020 by Cordelia Williamson
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