Chef Scott Pickett's Collingwood pasta bar with spanner crab lasagne, squid ink linguine and a 120-strong wine list.
Last year, we bid farewell to Scott Pickett's renowned Collingwood fine diner Saint Crispin. Now, the acclaimed chef has unveiled his new restaurant in the dynamic Smith Street space — and it's unlike any of his other Melbourne spots.
Lupo (which means 'wolf' in Italian) sees the prolific restaurateur and chef revisit his love for pasta and Italian fare, inspired by years of culinary training back in London. Here, the mind behind Estelle, Pickett's Deli and Matilda breaks slightly from his signature style to deliver a celebration of classic Italian flavours, spiked with local ingredients and a touch of modern Australian flair.
Daily house-made pasta is the undisputed star of the show here. Get excited for the likes of squid ink linguine ($28) with bottarga and a sardine vinaigrette, decadent spanner crab lasagne ($34), cappelletti ($29) with hare and celeriac, and a risotto ($45) of Western Australian black truffle and cipolla onion. There are Italian-inspired snacks, too, including toasts topped with 'nduja, fermented tomato and anchovy (two for $8), fried gnocchi (five for $10) and Port Phillip octopus ($21) with finger lime.
The menu is a collaboration between Pickett, Pickett and Co's executive chef Stuart McVeigh and head chef Charlie Watson, who previously worked together at London's Michelin-starred The Square restaurant.
Meanwhile, a 120-strong wine list focuses on Aussie drops crafted from Italian varieties, with a strong lineup of drops by the glass. Get excited, also, for a barrel-aged negroni made with an Australian take on Campari, which will feature among a cocktail selection of rejigged classics and signature blends.
True to form, this latest Pickett space is one of understated elegance and the 60-seat restaurant is brought to life with pops of orange and forest green.
Images: Peter Dillon.
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