Garum’s founding head chef Mario di Natale handed over the reins to Milan native Stefano Pingue in July 2019. The transition has gone without a hitch with the new kitchen leadership staying true to owner Guy Grossi’s Roman inspired dishes and aesthetic.
It’s simple stuff. And it pays to lower your expectations a little because in some aspects many of the dishes appear too simple. At first. But it’s all about authenticity, good produce, skillful and quick cooking. Entrees such as a well-balanced kingfish crudo and stuffed squash can be eaten solo or as share dishes. Both are good.
That most Roman of pasta dishes, fettucini carbonara is as it should be: diced rendered guanciale, egg yolk, shaved pecorino, fresh pasta cooked al dente. Oh, and not a splash of cream in sight. The pasta in the duck tortelli may be a little thick on the fold, but the duck farci is rich and big and moist. Pork ragu with tonnerilli pasta (it’s a long square cut shape) is excellent too.
Mains are good and rustic without fuss or tweezered garnishes. Our pick is the coniglio (rabbit) in a vegetable-laden saffron broth. Rabbit is so lean it’s difficult to keep from drying out. Garum’s version is rich and juicy.
Service standards is an ongoing issue, although this year we noted a vast improvement in the inconsistencies on the floor.
Garum is also home to one of Perth’s finest breakfast buffets. It draws hundreds of fans for weekend brunches and is open to the public and for guests of the Westin Hotel.