Set at the rear of a Bourke Street Building in Melbourne’s CBD, Lt Osteria presents a cosy yet stylish space to escape the office, and recharge the senses.
Being Italian, I instantly knew by the name (which translates to Little Bistro), that there would be an Italian behind this carefully planned space. Nunzio Vizzini, left the corporate world around the same time as his friend Nicole Thomson, and the pair decided to bring their ideal café to the city. Both being business minded, they knew exactly how surrounding office workers craved efficiency in service and coffee. Their corporate background set the foundation for a café that is easily accessible and in tune with time critical clientele.
Designed by Zwei Interiors, the split level space brings together their Italian & Australian heritage with artwork depicting the wild fennel (native to Italy), and Australian gum leaves. The art carries through into the venues menu and branding, which is accentuated by a soft mint theme, ample overhanging greenery, and blonde timber furnishings. Dowel rods throughout the venue create a canopy like feel, similar to that which you would find in Sicily and this is their attempt to bring the outside in. It’s large enough to cater for that important business meeting, while cosy enough to offer a soft space away from the harsh corporate environment.
The modern Australia menu has an Italian influence, with features heavily local seasonal produce. Lunch options come with suggest wine pairings, and with favourites which include the Roast Chicken and Spinach Risotto with Grana Padano (paired with Pinot Grigio), and the Spaghettini tossed in olive oil with basil, heirloom tomatoes, confit garlic, and pecorino (pairs best with pinot noir), and Bruschetta with buffalo mozzarella (Wining pairing: chardonnay).
Coffee is sourced from Reverence with the Lion Tamer and Night Vision blend in the hoppers for white and black coffee respectively, and rotating single origin beans for batch brew. My Ethiopian Areka natural offered a sweet cup with a jammy mouth feel, and berry acidity.
If you find yourself strolling down Goldsborough Lane, make the time to stop into this little gem. Find Lt. Osteria at the rear of 550 Bourke Street, Melbourne (Enter via Lt Bourke Street). Open weekdays from 7am to 4pm.