Cicio Cacio

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Restaurants key icon.

MondayClosed.

Tuesday5:00 – 9:00 pm.

Wednesday5:00 – 9:00 pm.

Thursday5:00 – 9:00 pm.

Friday5:00 – 9:00 pm.

Saturday5:00 – 9:00 pm.

SundayClosed.

behind Moon Bar 167 Riddiford Street, Newtown, Wellington

04 210 1404

The experience of wandering down an unassuming laneway next to Newtown's famous Moon 1 bar and suddenly finding yourself in a 1960s ski chalet is something in itself. The homely wooden interior just feels warm with its old-school patterned carpet but that could be just because the heat and noise of the kitchen is never far away. Upstairs is more accomodating for larger groups but between the decor and the ever-attentive wait staff, you'll always feel at home in Cicio Cacio.

Some might catch a glimpse of what's on offer from the all-Italian menu but the staff are more then qualified to take you through each rustic Roman and southern Italian specialty prepared by Giulio Ricatti, who cooked at the equally-popular Ombra before going it alone.

Their fare is Mediterranean but probably not as you know it, unless you've had poached cod whipped into a milky mousse and served on grilled polenta squares before. Even so, the flavour of simpler dishes like pasta and fagioli (beans) or Emilio's housemade pork sausages is always greater than the sum of their ingredients, which is one of the things that makes eating at Cicio Cacio so damn good.

Dinner here is best experienced over four courses - and in the true style of a homely Italian ostera, the menu varies daily depending on what's on the shelves, and pair it with a carafe or two of the imported house red or Garage Project, if you prefer. Mains come as they are, which is why you should also order something green from the side menu like the tortino di cavolfiore (cauliflower gratin) to enjoy them with, before capping everything off with cannoli.

You might try Cicio Cacio before a gig next door but the food in itself is worth a quick 10-minute bus trip or Uber from the city, and no more so than for their $12 -$15 lunch specials, which at that price effortlessly outclass any competing offer in town.

Words by Matt Paterson & Photography by Anna Briggs

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Location

behind Moon Bar 167 Riddiford Street, Newtown, Wellington

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