The inspiration for A Tavola (meaning “to the table”) derives from head chef and owner Eugenio Maiale’s childhood. As a child Maiale would play in the backyard of his Adelaide home waiting to hear the chime of “A Tavola” when dinner was ready.
On Maiale’s family kitchen table were consistently simple, honest and traditional style dishes. It was a daily ritual, almost a meditation, for his Mother to make her own pasta – from ravioli and tortellini to tagliolini. She passed her knowledge onto Eugenio who further developed these techniques during his childhood visits to Italy. He would watch his relatives make an assortment of pastas, including pappardelle and gnocchi, rolling the pasta on big wooden tables either by hand or with broom handles.
Maiale has continued this concept of simple and elegant food with his first Sydney restaurant. The cuisine can be described as predominantly “Abruzzese” (a region north-east of the boot, next to Rome), with a heavy emphasis on dried and fresh pasta cooked to order. His dream was to create a unique Italian experience. He has done this by creating what has been described as a “euro chic” dining space which revolves around a 10metre long communal Indian marble table.
“A Tavola is one of the sexiest Italian eateries I’ve encountered in a city already spoilt for choice.”
Simon Thomsen, Good Living, November 2007
“Walk past A Tavola in the afternoon and you’ll see boxes of produce and acres of different pasta shapes strewn over the long marble communal table that runs down to the open kitchen.”
Pat Nourse, Australian Gourmet Traveller, November 2007