Last week, we planned a birthday party for a close friend of ours, for dinner, we were keen to try something Italian but also something new. Having been through Portside for both Eat Street Markets and Sono we had passed through Gusto Da Gianni and had wanted to try it out for some time now. Without much debate, we reached a unianimous decision to have our meal there.
Having made a booking in advance, we arrived early and were rewarded with a stunning Brisbane sunset.
The staff kindly seated us and offered us menus. To their credit Gusto Da Gianni had placed us indoors in the comfort and safety of much needed air conditioning.
We noticed throughout the Italian themed decorations in the interior. While we ordered individually, we decided to also ordered some extras for the group to share.
Despite the relatively large order, our food came quite promptly.
My companion had the Linguine allo Scoglio a mixed seafood linguine pasta served with olive oil, garlic, chilli, cherry tomatoes and parsley. He noted the linguine was served al dente and there was a generous portion and variety of seafood provided. There was a definite kick in the chilli and my friend was pleasantly surprised at the variety of seafood offered. This was definitely a pasta he enjoyed.
I started my meal with the some antipasti, the Mozarella in Carozza. It was a deep fried ball of Mozarella wrapped in a delicious dough and served with napoli sauce. It was relatively light enough for us to enjoy other meals without being overly burdened by the cheesiness. I loved the light doughy texture of the wrapping, whilst my friend enjoyed it so much she took the liberty of finishing all the sauce.
Our next shared plate was the Pizza Gianni’s Favourite served with tomato, Mozzarella, rocket, Prosiutto and shavings of Reggiano cheese. We found the pizza to be heavy on the greens and the crust relatively light, but nicely burnt in the right places and balanced with the tomato base. My friend found the Prosiutto quite delicious and not overdone which definitely gave the pizza that extra dose of flavour. The Reggiano definitely gave the pizza some much needed sharpness. One thing I would have liked to see was some more Prosciutto in the pizza to balance out the amount of greens.
For my main, I had the Tagliolini alla Boscaiola which was served in homemade egg pasta with seasonal mushrooms, Italian sausage, a touch of cream and pecorino cheese. The pasta was also served al dente and went well with the spicy sausage, the mix of cream was and cheese, resulting in a very comforting and well flavoured dish. The sausage crumbled at the bite but at the same time was slighly chewy so that I could savour the meatiness. I really liked the spicy sausages as it added an extra kick to the otherwise creamy feel of the dish. It was definitely the highlight of my meal at Gusto Da Gianni and I really enjoyed this dish.
As a side we could not resist when we saw on the menu was offering Shoestring fries with Aioli. The fries were crispy and appropriately salted and the serving of aioli was a nice addition. Having said that I think my cravings got the better of me and there are more appropriate places for shoestring fries, and the side serving was definitely not worth ten dollars, but it was still a very tasty side.
Overall we enjoyed the good food and service provided by Portside’s Gusto Da Gianni. With its generosity in ingredients and flavours I think it is well worth a visit for enthusiasts of Italian food.