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La Tana

Restaurants Surry Hills
3 out of 5 stars

Eat at one of the city’s few Venetian restaurants without breaking the bank.

Cristian Di Sandri and Max Vian have been friends for 20 years, both hailing from Venice. Now they’ve come together in Sydney to open La Tana: a restaurant serving simple Italian fare and – wait for it – spritzes!

What’s a spritz, you say? Why, it’s a refreshing mix of Aperol or Campari with white wine and a splash of soda, and an ideal aperitivo.

La Tana has been open since February offering a menu that changes daily and one of the best murals you’re likely to come across in a Sydney restaurant. Taking up an entire wall, resplendent in maroon and gold, is a massive, sword-weilding, winged lion. The rest of the room may be fairly simple, but this representation of the Venetian flag is worth the trip alone.

That, and the crocchette al formaggio – asiago, blue cheese and tallegio – which are deep fried missiles of crunchy, delicious goo. What you’ll find on the paper menu in front of you and what’s featured on the board can vary dramatically, so take what we’re saying only as a rough guide. What we can tell you, though, is that you should order the burrata: a top knot of soft, milky mozzarella held in a thin skin of itself, served with tomato consomme and slivers of cucumber. Also order the silken leaves of San Daniele prosciutto that are so soft on the palate, it’s like eating suede made from piglets. Pork short ribs are meaty, rich and gelatinous. While we’re sad the spiedini di anatra – skewers of duck breast with olive pate and artichokes – aren’t on the menu when we visit, we’re happy as clams with the juicy grilled lamb skewers dressed with olive oil.

La Tana is the simple trattoria Sydney’s been waiting for, with great food and friendly service at reasonable prices.

Myffy Rigby


Venue name: La Tana
Address: 435 Cleveland St
Surry Hills
Opening hours: Mon 4pm-11pm; Tues Closed; Wed 4pm-11pm; Thurs 12pm-11pm; Fri-Sat 12pm-12am; Sun 2pm-10pm
Static map showing venue location