If you’re a Sydney-sider, you’ll totally understand what we mean when we say that the mere thought of Criniti’s conjures thoughts of metre-long pizzas and beautiful Italian boys with accents. If you aren’t a local, or you simply haven’t ventured to one of their six locations in New South Wales alone, we’ll just let the visual of that combination sink in for a moment.
Criniti’s is traditionally known for their extensive and delicious range of pizza and pasta. However, many don’t know of the hidden gem that is their brilliant fusion of traditional & contemporary dishes, which includes dishes such as steaks, burgers, seafood platters and gourmet salads. If all that wasn’t enough to make you drop everything & call to make a dinner reservation immediately, hold on to your seats when we tell you that….
THEY NOW SERVE BRUNCH! *loses marbles*
We popped in to feast on the new menu around 10:30am on a Saturday morning – what would normally be prime brunch time any/everywhere else aka total and absolute chaos. We’re not sure if it’s simply because people don’t know that this place serves morning-people’s food now, or whether Woolloomooloo just isn’t high enough on the hipster radar for a Saturday, but boy oh boy was it quiet, peaceful and absolutely beautiful. Nestled right on Woolloomooloo wharf, the sunshine, waters edge and docked boats make the perfect backdrop for for a cute catch up with friends or an amazing day-time date destination.
While we were menu perving, the first dish which caught our eye was the granola, a beautiful combination of toasted muesli with natural yoghurt, fresh berries & sprinkled with peanut butter protein powder. This dish was lovely, light & refreshing. It probably isn’t something you’d order as your singular and only dish for brunch, but if you’re not the hungriest human (whaat?!), after something super light or you want a palette-cleansing dish to share amongst the table, this should be your go to!
Hands down & without a doubt, the dish you must must must order when you are there is the Nutella double stack pancakes. There are no words for how decadent these pancakes are…light, fluffy, like you’re walking on a cloud really. Surprisingly & indeed impressively, the warm maple syrup, caramelised banana, vanilla bean gelato and Nutella swirls are not sugar-headache inducing & work in perfect balance with one another. Our only piece of advice is to order a savoury breakfast too and share it all! (Hashtag balance).
Now let’s take a momentary food pause and talk about the insanely delicious beverages that accompanied our brunch. The Tropical Energizer is an insanely taste-bud tingling combination of pineapple, orange, mango, banana & passionfruit. So fresh. So summery. SO tasty! While the coffee-coco nut is made of coffee, almond milk (YAY the inner health nut within us rejoiced), almonds, dates & cocoa powder. Yum Yum Yum. Big ticks from both of us, for both of these!
We know the sight of smashed avo on toast makes some people cringe…mainly because its absolutely everywhere & something that when not done perfectly, is gut-wrenchingly anti-climatic. We’re normally accustomed to the dish being accompanied by poached eggs and a cheese of some sort, usually fetta. However, this bad boy was pretty much the Italian cousin of the traditional dish. The chefs have seriously nailed the flavour and seasoning combo of the diced tomato and onion – it’s pretty much a breakfast bruschetta with smooth and creamy avocado on top. If you need any more convincing as to just how simple and delicious the Monte Cristo is, let’s just say that Chez (the blonde half of this duo, pictured in the above photo) cannot stand the sight, smell or taste of avocado or tomato…blasphemous and friendship-deal-breaking I know! After blackmailing her into just “having a taste”, the glorious and incredibly satisfying words “oh wow, that’s actually pretty friggin tasty” came out of her mouth. An avocado toast convert…enough said!
Lo and behold the golden child, the quiet overachiever, the straight-A student, the all-star athlete and general nice guy of the breakfast world. This photo speaks volumes on its own. A wooden board of steak (yes, steak at breakfast time…caveman style), sausages, sour dough toast, halloumi cheese, bacon, mushrooms, grilled tomatoes, poached eggs, zucchini flowers, polenta chips and fried eggplant. Mind. Blown. The menu says that this board is designed for two, but let’s just say that if we hadn’t been at the gym for 2 hours beforehand, our stomachs weren’t bottomless pits and we weren’t aspiring competitive eaters…that is a ginormous understatement. This platter could EASILY feed 3 people on it’s own, dare we say even 4 if you had another dish such as the granola on the side. Everything component of this masterpiece was cooked to perfection – runny egg yolks and a medium rare steak being the highlights.
If you hadn’t already gathered from the nature of this post, we kind of loved every second we spent at Criniti’s. If they weren’t already enough of a never-fail dinner spot for us, they’ve just gone up a notch and become one of our all-round favourites. There aren’t many places in Sydney that can do a mean breakfast, lunch AND dinner but these guys have managed to do just that. With obvious attention to detail in every dish and a menu that caters for even the fussiest of eaters, Criniti’s truly is a one stop shop for absolutely anyone and everyone.