It’s been two years since Top Chef Canada runner-up Rob Rossi partnered with David Minicucci of L’Unità to open Giulietta, and the lust of Toronto diners for top-notch cacio e pepe remains unsated. The duo draw on their Italian heritage to give classic Italian cuisine a fresh spin that’s light and correct. Rossi’s talents are à point: top-notch ingredients allow the chef to do more with less. The menu is replete with choice, yet easy to navigate. A single printed page lays out a few options each for primi, secondi and contorni, along with salads, pizzas and spuntini (snacks). The pizza Giulietta with lardo and scamorza is perfection, and the polpo e fagioli—grilled octopus with dollops of salsa verde and cannellini beans—is a must. A pine-nut tart—a subdued butter tart—has quickly become a customer favourite. The room is warm and adequately sound-baffled, making it remarkably comfortable for lingering. Low-alcohol cocktails are designed to prick the palate. The wine list touches all the right notes: bottles are reasonably priced, and mostly from low-intervention makers. Service surprises by being so capable and warm.
Photos: RICK O’BRIEN