Perhaps it’s because of writers block, or lack of time, or lack of inspiration… Or maybe it’s a combination of all three, but I’ve been deathly quiet on the blog front of late.
I’m not here now to make any excuses or for screaming declarations of food blogging re-entrance, but I was treated to a meal last night that has made it impossible for me not to put fingertip to keyboard.
I absolutely have to tell you all how happy this dinner made me feel, and tell you in detail.
However before I start, please forgive me for my unusually lacklustre photography.
You see, not only was I a guest at this dinner with my main man Cory, but the table conversation was flowing as freely as the wine and after only a couple of snaps on my trusty Nikon, I decided to retire it for the evening.
It just felt like the right thing to do.
OK, it was just what I wanted to do.
I wanted to be present and enjoy the dinner and the company without considering camera angles and ISO’s.
I didn’t want to experience it only through a lens.
Shit, can I still even call myself a food blogger after such a taboo admission?
Anyhoo, and so I begin…
The word itself characterizes so many other words.
Home. Love. Food. Fed. Generosity. Traditional. Heart.
So when you visit a restaurant called Nonna and I you anticipate and hope that the meal you’re about to receive will encapsulate all of these things.
Let me tell you, the meal I ate last night did encapsulate all of these things.
My Italian friend Stacey used to tell me how she’d arrive at her Nonna’s after school to the cries of “Anastasia are you hungry! Let me feed youuu!” at which point the dear old girl would promptly retreat to her outdoor shed kitchen to whip up a 3 course after-school meal for Stace and all of her siblings.
And that’s what Nonna’s do. They feed you.
It’s not fancy. It’s got no frills.
But it’s fresh, and delicious, and generous and memorable not because of difficult techniques, but because it is completely noble food.
I want to applaud Chef Khalil Rashwan for being so unapologetic.
Here’s an internationally recognised chef who proudly presents a main of perfectly fried Flounder Milanese with a couple of wedges of lemon and a side of simple pomodoro penne… Because hey, that’s what Nonna would do, but also because when something is that delicious in its modesty who cares about fancy presentations?
We live in an age where food is gauged on its ‘Instagram worthiness’.
But are we also missing out sometimes. Losing our appreciation of substance, to style?
Starting from a beautifully constructed Antipasto with Chef Khalil’s house-made rustic bread, to his spectacularly delicious Tiramisu, which as Cory so rightly stated ‘Is what a Tiramisu should taste like’.
This food was honest and heartwarming, and it made us all smile.
Housed in an intimate space in a side street off the Parade, Nonna and I is a welcoming and unpretentious gem.
From its pleasantly kitsch wall mural to the open galley kitchen, I felt like I was in someone’s home.
And if you are a lover of tradition and want to be nurtured by a truly tasty meal, you should visit Nonna too.
Until next time… xxx
NONNA & I
PH: (08) 8331 1922
1a Margaret St (off the Parade) Norwood SA
∼ Mon, Tues, Wed: Open for Dinner only from 6P
∼ Thursday – Sunday: Lunch from 12PM -3PM and Dinner from 6PM
Functions / Private group bookings available for lunch & dinner.