Italian food is arguably the very best comfort food this world has to offer. Filled with simple flavours, plenty of garlic and carb-y goodness, what's not to love? Add in a cheeky bottle of red and you're in for a good night. Unfortunately not all Italian food is equal, so to make sure your next dining experience is positively sublime, we've listed the best Newcastle has to offer.
COAL RIVER & CO (Cooks Hill)
Coal River & Co's house chef, Nicholas, creates fresh pasta menus based on seasonal produce. Using wholesome ingredients and preparing meat products onsite, Coal River & Co ensures optimal freshness and care with its ingredients. Alongside various varieties of house-made pasta, the Cooks Hill restaurant offers a range of delicious starters, such as smoked duck terrine and zucchini, goat cheese and pine-nut arancini balls. You can't go past-a this!
Location: 120 Darby Street, Cooks Hill NSW 2300
ROSINA'S PIZZA RESTAURANT (Newcastle)
Offering up simple, good Italian fare, Rosina's Pizza Restaurant has become a popular haunt with locals. Whether you're after Italian to takeaway or just an affordable date night option, Rosina's has your back. Sit back and watch as pizzas are freshly made in front of you after choosing your topping, be it garlic prawns, veggo or Rosina's Special. No matter what your preference, the quality fare won't disappoint.
Location: 39 Hunter Street, Newcastle NSW 2300
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UNA VOLTA (Newcastle)
Did someone say date night? Una Volta in Newcastle's bustling King Street is the perfect venue for your next rendezvous. The intimate restaurant regularly alters its menu, ensuring fresh produce is always provided. Grab some share plates or go all out and indulge in the three course set menu, often including favourites such as red wine, braised beef and Gorgonzola gnocchi. Oh, and did we mention it was BYO?
Location: 110 King Street, Newcastle NSW 2300
EL NONNO RESTAURANT (Hamilton)
This family owned and run Italian restaurant knows how to do great quality Italian food. With options like hand rolled cannelloni with spinach, ricotta and fresh napolitana sauce, their dishes are sure to hit the spot. If you feel like something a bit less traditional, give their panfried haloumi a go, served with a scrumptious sage butter and a drizzle of balsamic. Make sure you head to the pasta night on either Tuesday or Wednesday so you can indulge in big servings of delicious carb-y goodness.
Location: 8/79 Beaumont Street, Hamilton NSW 2303
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VERDE LUNA (Newcastle)
Verde Luna offers 'a taste of the Mediterranean' right on your doorstop. Head to the Tudor Street restaurant and order delicious Italian classics such as pizza, pasta and garlic bread. If you're keen to mix it up, dishes also include black mussels with ginger, garlic and coriander. Or how about a simple twist on an old favourite? Pasta with pumpkin, asparagus, pesto and cream. Sounds good doesn't it?
Location: 115 Tudor Street, Newcastle NSW 2303
HUNTER GOURMET PIZZA (New Lambton)
If good quality pizza is all you want, then head to this no frills eatery and get ready to enter carb heaven. All pizza bases are freshly made and come with a range of traditional and gourmet toppings. If you aren't sure what topping to order, give the Tunisia a go; a gourmet veggo pizza packed with chargrilled eggplant, sun-dried tomato, artichoke, feta and Spanish onion. After that, if you think you can fit it in, grab a Nutella pizza topped with strawberries.
Location: Shop 3/12 Alma Road, New Lambton NSW 2305
Where's your favourite place to indulge in Italy's finest culinary creations? Share it with you neighbours below.