Lola’s Italian & Bar – the perfect spot for an intimate dinner date in Bondi

Lola’s Italian & Bar boasts beach views by day and intimate dinner date vibes by night

Previously known as Lola’s Level 1, Lola’s Italian & Bar has recently shifted from a Mediterranean menu to 100% Italian. Marco Ambrosino (former Fratelli Paradiso & 10 William St co-owner) and his business partner, Manny Spinola, have teamed up with Head Chef, Toby Stanfield (ex Fabbrica and the Old Fitzroy Hotel) to create a classically Italian menu complimented by curated wine and cocktails. The result is a refined yet approachable dining venue in the heart of Bondi.

Although it’s in a prime spot on Bondi’s main strip, you could easily walk past Lola’s without realising it’s there. Elevated from street level (above Anita Gelato and Macellaria), this trendy restaurant overlooks Bondi Beach, which on this particular evening also included the colourful hues of the Ferris wheel and the twinkling lights of Bondi’s Winter Wonderland festivities. This complimented the restaurant’s low lighting and nostalgic Mediterranean decor to create an elegant and cosy atmosphere – a trendy wine bar vibe perfect for an intimate dinner date.

A cosy Italian restaurant overlooking Bondi Beach. What’s not to love?

We start with some cocktails – a Spicy Margarita for my companion and a good, old-fashioned Aperol Spritz for me. We start with Arancini allo Zafferano – rich and creamy with a saffron risotto. The Gnocco Fritto – fried bread with San Daniele prosciutto is light and salty and beautifully complimented by the Burrata served with radicchio. The burrata’s creaminess contrasts with the sweet and sour agrodolce and pinenuts adds texture.

Creamy burrata drizzled in agrodolce and encased in radicchio – one of the menu’s highlights!

For our mains, we opted for that evening’s special – Cacio e Pepe & Truffle Pasta – and the Crumbed Lamb Rack. If I was forced to eat one thing every single day for the rest of my life, pasta would be the obvious and very easy choice. Despite my undying love of pasta, however, I was swayed by our waiter’s enthusiasm for the lamb. Delicious – a little bit like a refined schnitzel though I did steal a forkful of my dining companion’s mouthwateringly rich and creamy pasta special. Oh well – we live and learn!

For dessert, we opted for two Italian classics – Affogato and Tiramisu. The portions are nicely sized, but just enough to leave you satisfied and well-fed without that bloated ‘I’ve overdone it’ feeling. All of this Italian goodness was accompanied by a bottle (and a few extra glasses) of Kala Salento Primitivo Rosso. Recommended by our sommelier as a medium to full-bodied Shiraz-like red, it was very much appreciated!

The Tiramisu was far better than our photography skills…

Lola’s Italian & Bar adds to Bondi’s restaurant scene by offering a refined dining experience. For something to beat the cost of living crisis, check out the ‘Pranzo Pronto’ Three-Course Lunch Special for $49 per person from Thursday to Sunday between 12 pm and 4 pm.

Lola’s Italian & Bar: 
Address: Level 1, 180-186 Campbell Parade, Bondi Beach
Opening hours: Mon – Thurs 5 pm until late, Fri – Sun 12 pm until late
Book online here

About the author

Originally from Wales, Siri is a native Welsh speaker and bilingual writer living in Sydney. With a background in film and television production, particularly comedy, she loves to make people laugh - usually at her own expense. Siri writes about all sorts from film and restaurant reviews to marathon running and adventure travel. She loves pale ale and shiraz and is yet to meet a chocolate mousse she can’t devour in seconds. An intrepid adventurer trapped inside the body of a couch potato, there’s nothing Siri won’t try - but she can’t promise to be even remotely graceful while doing it.


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