Alex Harmon investigated the new Criniti's chain addition to Woolloomooloo just before Xmas...
Italians do simple and subtle well. They also do over-the-top and flashy. Criniti’s falls into the latter category. With two Ducati motorcycles hanging from the ceiling and a mountainous menu, the new Woolloomooloo restaurant is an unmissable addition to the Finger Wharf.
While it’s Southern Italian cuisine by nature, unique to this restaurant is the Asian fusion, or “sister from another Mister” as the sashimi/sushi menu suggests. We give the Prosciutto, Mozzarella, Cucumber and Semi Dried Tomato Sushi ($16) a go… when in Rome. While it’s not for the sushi purists, the prosciutto ‘seaweed’ makes for an interesting twist.
Funnily enough, it’s the simple things they do well: Homemade Spaghetti With Mamma Criniti’s Meatballs ($22.90/small) shines, even if the meatballs are a little over injected with breadcrumbs.
The sauce is stunning, as is the Bruschetta ($9.90) with goat’s cheese and artichokes. Either way, if you make your pick from their choices before sundown, you’re doing well.
The Seafood Skewers ($39.90) are impressive in presentation and taste – they're served like sea
trophies, and the prawns, octopus and scallops are prized catches.
End with the Nutella Calzone ($17), a ridiculously ugly but divine smattering of pastry, marshmallows, peanuts and strawberries. Criniti’s is gaudy, but in a good way - a suitably festive experience.
Shop 2, 6 Cowper Wharf Road, Woolloomooloo
Ph: (1300) 274 648