I’m on the loose end tonight because Mysaucepan is catching up with her girlfriends. So I find myself with the boys which is a rare thing these days.
Well, not quite all the boys because my friend Peter is also with his wife Cindy. Tonight, he suggests one of the better Italian restaurants in Sydney’s north shore and we rock up to Amici Ristorante Pizzeria along Miller street. When this restaurant first opened years ago, I remember the craze with its wafer thin pizzas with a refreshing twist from the traditional ones. I love thin crusted pizzas because less crust means more toppings and flavours.
The staff is ever so friendly at this lively restaurant that has two dining sections – downstairs dining, a small courtyard and dining room upstairs. We settle for a table downstairs that looks out to the lively street activity and a buzzing restaurant strip.
We cannot resist a couple of pizzas for starters and opt for the frutti di Mare and a Bianca which is a pizza senza pomodoro (pizza without tomato sauce).
The seafood pizza is true to its form with delectable fresh seafood of prawns, calamari and black mussels. The crust is fresh and crisp and a sprinkling of chilli flakes on each slice only whets my appetite more.
The Bianca is one of my all time favourites without tomato sauce and it looks to be everyone’s favourite too. No sooner can I take a photo of this delectable pizza that a few pieces are already missing. “Bugger this food blogger!” seems to be what the boys are saying to me.
Light on the meat with wafer thin slices of prosciutto, mushroom and shaved and crumbly parmigiano reggiano, the star flavour of this pizza is the aromas of black truffle oil.
The hint of this heady and earthy aroma with each bite is brings this pizza to a whole new level.
A ling fillet arrives golden brown and is crisp outside and succulent inside with a slivers of roasted capsicum and sun-dried tomatoes.
I resist the temptation of ordering a pasta although I know the pastas at this restaurant are really wholesome and delicious.
A chance order of the bistecca del giorno or steak of the day and it turns out to be a great choice. A healthy piece of ribeye on the bone arrives cooked to medium rare as requested. It is nicely seared on the outside with its slightly charred and crisp flavours while the meat is pink and tender inside.
The delectable red wine reduction sauce has hints of truffle like the creamy mash on the side with a skewer of grilled baby zucchinis.
I request for more freshly cracked black pepper and then proceed to wipe this sauce with each piece of meat and mash until the entire plate is clean. No Dijon or any other mustard is needed and this steak can rival some of the better steak houses in town and I would gladly return for this same dish all over again.
Peter orders one of my favourite pastas, a spaghetti marinara that is cooked in a baking bag wrapped in foil to seal in all the flavours.
The healthy bag of seafood pasta is opened at the table. We see plump pieces of prawn cutlets, clams, mussels, fish, calamari that are mixed with cherry tomatoes in a delectable sauce.
Cullen is one of the great wineries from Margaret River in Western Australia and its cabernet sauvignon merlot is one of the best wines from its stable.
Tannins are soft, its complexity clearly evident with bold tones of tobacco and oak. It has a lingering finish that draws away ever so slowly.
Amici is still maintaining its standard for good pizzas and pastas because I know I will be back for the Bianca, marinara and that beautiful ribeye which I would hope would be the steak of the day when I return.
So dear readers, what is your favourite activity for a girls or boys night out?
Amici Ristorante Pizzeria
465 Miller street
Cammeray, New South Wales
Tel: + 61 2 9922 2222
Business hours: Dinner Monday to Sunday, 6pm to late