Being brought up in an Italian family has really helped fuel my passion for Italian cuisine. My nonni (grandparents) have taught me a lot about their culture and the different ways they grow, prepare and create from what they have learnt from their family back in Benevento, Italy. I was always a very curious and hands on kid, so I picked up on things very quickly and was always keeping my mind active with thoughts and ideas.
During my Chef days I learnt a lot from my surroundings, observing other Chefs around me, and realising what I want out of this career. I wanted to be in control! I wanted to run my own kitchen with my own menu, my choice of ingredients and equipment and the only way I was going to have all those things was to open up my own restaurant.
Have you always wanted to be a Chef?
As a child, I had a passion for cooking pasta; I used to stand on a small stool and stir the pasta on the stove. I also enjoyed picking tomatoes at the Virginia farms in the Summer and making our homemade tomato sugo, as a family, which is very traditional. Over the years my passion had developed; and this passion has brought me here!
How would you define your style?
I would define my style as modern yet traditional and quite different from other restaurants. Simple flavours focussing on one main ingredient, but our major difference I believe is the freshness of our ingredients; starting with the pasta.
What is your feature flavour these days?
I would have to say our sous vide vegetable and chicken stock.
Obsessive compulsive about?
Organisation and cleanliness. A saying I’m famous for in the kitchen is: “don’t let the section control you, you control the section.”
Your greatest culinary inspirations/influences:
I have a few close friends / Chefs that have great qualities and have inspired/ influenced me in hospitality.
What do you love about this business?
I love the fact that we prepare the majority of our menu in house. It’s a passion to work from scratch and then for our guests to really appreciate and taste all the effort that goes into every dish for themselves.
An ingredient you can’t live without?
Most ‘eyebrow raising’ menu item?
Arancini di Agnello (Lamb Arancini). Traditionally arancini are made with whole peas throughout the risotto mixture; instead I have made a
pea puree and the arancini, which have been stuffed with slow braised lamb, sit on the bed of the puree and are accompanied by chèvre, mint and freshly grated horseradish. I have stuck to the traditional shape of the arancini which are quite large and pear shaped.
“Gigli” for sure! The shape of the pasta is called gigli, which translates to “Lily” in English, so of course the pasta looks like a Lily but like many pasta shapes, they do have a few other different names. This dish is made up of king oyster mushrooms, shiitake mushrooms and enoki mushrooms which have been handpicked in SA, as well as porcini mushrooms which have been imported from Italy. Together they combine with a dash of fresh cream from Paris Creek, SA, truffle oil imported from Italy and are finished with truffle infused Tremosine (soft, cow’s milk cheese).
Nestled into Goodwood's stylish King William Road precinct, find Farina 00 Pasta & Wine restaurant, fragrant with the aromas of rich Italian cuisine. Sleek in design, a bright interior flaunts trendy touches, from suave light fittings to a wrought iron fireplace, luring passers-by inside to perch at the bar or linger over a delectable feast. Offering premium quality Italian inspired dishes, everything on a mouth-watering menu is crafted from local and imported Italian produce including pasta made fresh from scratch daily using Italy's signature Stagioni 5 "00" flour, from which Farina 00 takes its name. Complement a dish of Casarecce with smoked pancetta, cracked black peppercorns, egg and 24-month aged Parmigiano Reggiano with a glass of southern Italian or South Australian wine.