Inspired by Italian street food and the slow-food movement that celebrates natural, organic, and fresh ingredients, Via Italia is ideally placed to attract office workers, students, and the late-night crowd. There are three main options; piade, pasta and salad bowls. Choose the base, add fillings such as meatballs or chilli king prawns, and top with dressings, cheese or salad. This building block concept works well with Asian cuisine and it has potential here, but the combinations are not infallible. The piada, an Italian flatbread, is the jewel in the crown, but this wrap containing spaghetti doesn’t deliver a carb hit quite as convincingly as a chip butty. The signature via carne is an overwhelming combination of salted beef, gherkins, rocket, pasta, and enough mustard to make a hot dog blush, wrapped in a piada. While fusion is fashionable, it’s probably best to build your own dish if you’re looking to capture a familiar flavour of Italy. However, with a location next to Central Station, its good quality coffee and pastas to-go are likely to appeal to commuters.
- High point: Endless combinations for the open-minded
- Low point: Signature dishes need honing
- Provides: Halal options, Wheelchair access, Free wi-fi
- Music on stereo: Fifities pop
- Open since: 2014