A move up William Street sees No Mafia embrace Spritzes, alfresco and house-made pasta among signature small plates and a winning wine list.
No Mafia in its original guise had, over six years, become the kind of solid go-to we all need up our sleeve, a place for reliable small plates, true Italian charm and the calling card of owners Emma Ferguson and Dan Morris: a cracking wine list. With the pair retiring their short-lived Spanish-leaning venture, Los Bravos, further up William Street, No Mafia has taken up the empty space.
“If the maccheroni with rich house-made pork and fennel sausage is any indicator, the future looks bright and saucy.”
So, same No Mafia just bigger, right? Not quite. Sure, the simple antipasti classics remain, such as white anchovies, pickled octopus and loaves from Bread In Common, and there’s a bowl of crisp, salty, piping hot and perfectly golden fritto misto for those who like their seafood properly battered (read: everyone). But opportunities to sit alfresco and a new focus on pasta from head chef Leo Crescenzi serves to expand the brief. And if the maccheroni with rich house-made pork and fennel sausage is any indicator, the future looks bright and saucy.
The space, with long banquettes and intimate booths, errs more towards restaurant than No Mafia’s roots as a small bar, but this evolution, in a city that embraces Italian, bodes well for Ferguson, Morris and their capable crew.