Saturday, 14 June 2014

Pizza Power {Italy 528 Review}

I take pizza very seriously. It has the power to be the best food in the world (yes, that's right. THE WORLD) or the epitome of disappointment.*
teenage mutant ninja turtles

I also have very firm views on matching the pizza to the occasion. Italian-style, handmade, wood-fired pizza is clearly the King of pizza but it must be served within seconds of being removed from the oven, eager hands poised to pull apart the stretchy slices, so hot it burns your mouth but you don't care because the pleasure far outweighs the pain. This kind of pizza can't be home delivered; 10 minutes in a cardboard sauna results in sweaty, chewy, misery.

Melbourne offers up some seriously good pizza. I have talked about some of my faves, D.O.C and +39 Pizzeria before. But fear not Melbourne Westies, the pizza gods are looking after us too at Italy 528

The restaurant is a little hard to spot, being quite plain from the street. Inside it is an elongated room with simple furnishings and a very lovely mural of the Spanish Steps.
italy 528 spanish steps mural ascot vale

The menu is largely pizza-based with a number of side salads and entrees. The wine list is succinct  but with a good mixture of Italian and local wines.
italy 528 table menu ascot vale pizza

Despite having been here a number of times I haven't tried much beyond the pizzas. Because, well, look at them:
capricciosa pizza italy 528 italian ascot vale
Pizza Capricciosa- tomato, fior di latte, smoked ham, artichokes, olives, mushrooms

prawn chilli pizza italy 528 ascot vale
Pizza Pagano- tomato, fior di latte, prawns, peas, parsley, chilli

Perfect bases with a slightly charcoaled bottom, crisp on the outside, chewy in the middle and just the right amount of top-quality ingredients. The Pagano was especially good with the peas adding a little burst of freshness to cut through the richness of the cheese, prawns and good olive oil.

A Caprese salad is the perfect (and terribly healthy- calcium is important for strong bones, and well, basil is green...) accompaniment to a pizza binge. Big chunks of buffalo mozzarella, ripe tomatoes and sweet basil drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with sea salt.

caprese salad italy 528 ascot vale

Italy 528 is an absolute gem on Mt Alexander Road. The pizzas are as good as those of fashionable Carlton and CBD restaurants yet it is never that busy. A pity, this little family owned restaurant deserves to be.

*Hyperbole you say? Nonsense!

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Italy 528 on Urbanspoon


  1. Pizza "so hot it burns your mouth but you don't care because the pleasure far outweighs the pain"... heheheh love it! That is definitely the fresh woodfired pizza to die for. Great review!

  2. Oh my goodness, my one, true kryptonite - PIZZA! How cruel this was to read before dinner, because everything on here looks absolutely scrumptious! I will most *definitely* be paying this restaurant a visit next time I find myself in Melbourne :)


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