Now Open: Tommy Panini Is Brookvale's New Italian Sandwich Bar From Mariah Carey's Former Private Chef

If a generously loaded sandwich made from folded pizza dough sounds like your idea of a good time, Brookvale is beckoning.
Maxim Boon
Published on July 09, 2024

Even megastars get hungry — which is where chef to the stars Tom Morrison steps in. This seasoned kitchen pro has cooked for the likes of the elusive chanteuse Mariah Carey, Sk8ter Boi songstress Avril Lavigne and occasional elf Orlando Bloom, but Morrison's skills extend beyond merely feeding A-listers. Now, everyday Sydneysiders will be able to sample his food as he turns his talents to that most universal of morsels, the humble sandwich.

These, however, are no ordinary sangas. From Tommy Panini, his hole-in-the-wall pop-up venue in Brookvale, Morrison is serving up his version of the Campanian street food staple, the panuzzo — an Italian sandwich featuring bread made from pizza dough.


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"We wanted to offer something different," Morrison explains. "Not just another sandwich, but a culinary experience that combines the best of pizza and sandwiches."

These pizza-sandwich hybrids have been enjoying a viral moment on social media recently, but Morrison has gone to great lengths to ensure his panuzzi stand out from the digital crowd. Rosemary and garlic-infused oil is used to make the dough, which is then combined with rich and creamy fior di latte, produced by Marrickville cheesemongers Vannella. The bread is then baked in much the same way as a Neapolitan pizza — in a woodfired pizza oven, heated to around 400 celsius — to achieve that tell-tale bubble and char.


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The fillings take their cues from hearty Italian flavours, such as the chicken cotoletta (the Stivale answer to a schnitzel), spiked with Calabrian chilli mayo, sundried tomato tapenade, zippy hits of zucchini pickle and finished with a generous shaving of parmigiano.

There's also a classic mortadella panini on the menu, stuffed with layer upon layer of the ever-popular Italian luncheon meat, dressed with fresh pesto, ricotta and a sweet surprise — house-made pistachio praline. Salami also gets a shout, combined with a roast carrot and capsicum tapenade, nduja, silky fior di latte and peppery rocket, and for meat-free option, there's a Lebanese twist featuring green-pea falafel.

However, be warned: should you acquire a taste for these celeb-worthy sandos, you'll need to make the most of them while you can. Morrison's pop-up will only be offering its takeaway panuzzi until the end of spring.

Find Tommy Panini at 4/515 Pittwater Road, Brookvale, open Tuesday–Friday, 10:30am until sold out, until the end of spring. Head to the venue's Instagram account for details.

Published on July 09, 2024 by Maxim Boon
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