I SWEAR the waitress at Fiorentina is psychic; she’s got a touch of the gypsy look about her and knew what I wanted before I did.
With just a narrow window between appointments I needed prompt service if I was to fit in a reviewable meal, and I’d barely scrunched my butt into one of the chairs fronting Angove Street when she was at my table offering me water and a run-down through the specials of the day. It was a Tuesday, so the place wasn’t that packed, but some staff take that as an opportunity to also have a slow-down while they discuss their weekend frolicking.
Barely had the words home-made gnocchi passed her lips and I was settled on my lunch. I’ve been desperate to find a great gnocchi ever since Rosa Saccone hung up her apron at Gino’s in Fremantle; the matriarch of the clan, she cranked out the best gnocchi I’ve ever eaten.
Sadly, this one wasn’t quite a match, but it was still darned fine. The gnocchi itself definitely needed to be a touch firmer, but the sauce was delicious.
Grape tomatoes gave it a real flavour boost as they burst in the mouth, while fresh baby spinach freshened it up and chives added a little extra pizzazz.
It was just the right size for a filling lunch, and at $19.50 I thought it good value.
Looking around the patisserie/cafe’s clientele of trendites glued to their phones, well-heeled socialites and a nonna with her two grand-kids, I noticed the waitress had skipped the first special of the day.
Clearly she had been tuned in to my needs on some higher plane, so I thought I’d put it to the ultimate test and let her choose my dessert.
Actually, truth is I was bewildered by the choice of baked treats in the cabinet which were all sans name tags, and there was no one at the counter to explain them. I knew there were some nice cannoli there, but after that…
“You mean like a cannoli?” she prompted when I left the choice to her discretion.
Bingo, she’s clearly a mind reader.
She chucked in a couple of choux pastries ($2.50 each) and a nice, big pot of English breakfast tea ($5.50) and I was set. The cannoli ($3.90) was creamy and delicious and the choux light and delightful.
by STEVE GRANT
44 Angove Street, North Perth
Mon – Sat from 6am
Sun from 7am