North Shore’s new Bar Infinita is a ‘destination Italian’ worth crossing the bridge for…with alumni from Firedoor and Ormeggio

Bar Infinita

Smouldering, zesty, bitter and sweet. Nope, not a description of the sex in the city cast in a new season, it’s the trailer about the experience at North shore newcomer, Bar Infinita, Gordon.

Step inside and you’re likely to be hit with a bit of nostalgia, straight away there’s something familiar and comforting, it could be the retro tones but I suspect the scent of Aussie hardwood burning off in the wood fire oven is the memory trigger.

Fernando running front of house, busy making everyone feel at home, tells us this is home cooking. Sure, if you are a celebrated chef, you can have this calibre at home, we know that we aren’t up for your average mid-week meal tonight. This is not owner Taran Tamana’s first rodeo, his family owned the long standing Newtown favourite Tamana’s. In opening this classy retro Italian wine bar, Taran wanted to give the North Shore a great destination to dine.

The warm centre of Naples native head chef Francesco Lervolino’s kitchen is the red and white tiled wood fire oven. Pizza invented in Naples is not however fired up in this baby, with a stint at Firedoor and Ormeggio, Lervolino reserves it for secondi.

We are witness to a trend of Italian joints running a similar menu; the Sydney icon balloon bread, well curated anti-pasti, home made pastas, secondi featuring prime meats and classic dolce, but at Bar Infinita they have an edge.

The European, ham, cheese, tomato

From the anti-pasti, it’s impossible to go past the pizza bianca, pesto stuffed burrata, san Daniele prosciutto and heirloom tomatoes. Such a crowd pleaser, rip open the steaming hot bread and soak up all the creamy cheesy goodness. It’s a fabulously European ham, cheese, tomato combo.

Delectable seafood

Squeeze in a couple of seafood bites before Primera. The buttery seared sweet scallops on cauliflower puree with bitter preserved lemon served in the shell hit all dimensions of your palate. A couple of the super fresh Sydney rock oysters with zingy limoncello granita are not enough. A few family recipes are showcased on the pasta menu, including the Rigatoni Amatriciana. The traditional Roman style tomato sauce is thick and neither sweet nor acidic, it’s the epitome of balance. It is rich, loaded with guanciale and fresh parmy, it’s a standout dish.

Dish of the day – The Amatriciana

The Tajima Wagyu Striploin served medium rare with mushroom puree, caramelised baby onions, crispy curly kale and a rosemary jus is savoury, sweet and just a touch bitter from char. A side of fat fries with truffle aioli and blistered broccolini dressed with ricotta salata and fried capers is sharp and deliciously savoury. It pairs perfectly with a glass of Benotti Rosavica Nebbiolo Nebiulina.

Prime meats

Grazie a Dio for Italian desserts. When you think you can’t fit another thing in, airy dolces and aperitivos were made for this moment. One of the house hero ingredients, lemon is incarnated into a masterpiece – the Amalfi Coast lemon mousse. Mouthfuls of sweet, sweet air inside a fluorescent yellow chocolate shell with a bitter lemon heart is a taste of coastal Italy, very memorable with a glass of the house made Limoncello.

The Amalfi Coast

We are rating this as a ‘destination Italian’ worth crossing the bridge for, lucky locals can drop in for dinner Wednesday to Sundays.

Bar Infinita10 St John Avenue, Gordon
Wednesday to Sunday from 4:30pm

About the author

BIO: Meg lives, breathes and invests in leading edge tech and food innovation. Curious about what makes things work and is in pursuit of experiencing the unending trends and invention in cuisines. There’s virtually nothing she won’t eat, drink or some combination that she isn’t open to. With the benefit of having lived abroad Meg has a high bar for authenticity and delights in running a lot of taste tests.


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