PERTH | Booking for the wrong week, having to cancel a booking because of COVID border closures, and several other things have contributed to me not visiting Lulu La Delizia for years after it first appeared on my list.
I last tried owner/chef Joel Valvasori-Pereza food way back when he was the head chef at Lallah Rookh, so yeah, it’s been a while. Based on that experience, and the accolades that Joel has received since opening Lulu La Delizia in 2016, I was expecting a great dinner, and boy did Joel and the team come through.
The restaurant is named after Joel’s grandmother who immigrated to Perth in the 1950s from Italy’s Friuli region. The food is an ode to his grandmother and her food, and the food Joel grew up with.
The pasta, lauded by many as the best in Australia, doesn’t disappoint. Whether it’s tagliatelle with veal, pork, vegetable, and red wine ragu, a daily special of spaghetti with freshly caught Jurien Bay crayfish, or spaghetti neri with chilli crab and peperoncio in aceto, the pasta dishes are brilliant.
It’s not just the pasta that impresses. Fritole, squid ink doughnuts filled with lemon mascarpone and topped with salmon roe and fennel seed sugar, are a real highlight, as are nonna’s meatballs in soft polenta topped with parmigiano. Seasonal ox heart tomatoes with salsa verde, white anchovies, and picked red onions are also top notch.
For dessert, both the tiramisu ‘corretto’ matched with a nip of Grappa Nonino and Zia’s Venetian crustoli delight.
It’s absolutely ridiculous that it took me so long to visit Joel, but you bet this won’t be my last visit now that the borders have reopened (fingers crossed they stay that way). There’s a very good reason that Lulu La Delizia is considered one of Australia’s best Italian restaurants.
Essential Perth dining indeed.
Lulu La Delizia
5/97 Rockeby Road
Western Australia 6008
Sat, Tue – Wed: 5:00pm to 10:00pm
Thu – Fri: 12:00pm to 3:00pm; 5:00pm to 10:00pm