The essentials of the best Italian cooking are fresh quality ingredients and simplicity of presentation – terms which perfectly sum up Enzo Antonelli's food at Ciuccio. His meats come from Hobart's best butcher and the oils, cheeses and many other bits and pieces, from a local Italian deli's top shelf. Antonelli knows quality matters, doesn't take shortcuts and you can taste the difference on the plate. Beef carpaccio, for example, is a dish so classically perfect in its few basic components that most modern chefs can't leave it well enough alone. But here it is simplicity and perfection itself – shaved beef that actually tastes like beef, a few dabs of aioli topped with small circular slices of caper berries, oil, parmesan, beautifully-dressed rocket and thin slices of crisply grilled bread. E'basta.
Similarly the osso bucco – two thick rounds of beef shin with plenty of marrow and tender, moist meat – is served with al dente risotto topped with a tomato braising liquid and a sprinkling of gremolada (an essential, but too-often-forgotten finishing touch that cuts, refreshes and balances the richness of the dish). Fluffy gnocchi comes with a lip-sticking, long-cooked shredded meat ragu. The Margherita pizza is, as it should be, simply tomato and basil on a thin base, while the generous tiramisu is as creamily rich as you could want. The blackboard list of wines changes regularly with all, including some Italian whites and reds, available at very reasonable prices by the glass and bottle.