Newcastle CBD gets a new venue – brought to us by the team behind Napoli & Popolo Gelateria!
For those of you that remember the old Bank building on Hunter St next door to Momos, you’ll be excited to hear that it has been given a new life with the team behind Napoli and Popolo Gelateria bringing a completely new vibe in the form of Piazza Mercato.
“If you’ve ever waited for a table at Napoli Centrale or lined up for pistachio gelato at Popolo across the road, you’ll welcome the new inner-city addition to the Italian Group family,” Alfonso said.
Whilst the team got their hands on the space around the time Covid hit, it’s only been full steam ahead for the past 4-5 months, with plenty of renos, idea throwing, and food making amongst the chaos!
Officially opening up to the public this week, the two-storey venue will be bringing authentic Italian eats, live music, and even an Italian deli to the people of Newcastle.
“As the head of the family, I have been inspired by the ancient, bustling market square at the heart of the Mercato neighbourhood in my birthplace of Naples.”
“Piazza Mercato will take you from breakfast to dinner, and beyond. Our foundations are traditional – from authentic Italian cold cuts you can’t find at your typical deli to generous serves of pillowy house-made gnocchi and perfectly seared swordfish.”
One step inside Piazza Mercato, and you’ll be greeted with the newly decked out Italian Deli space complete with a brand-new coffee machine where the team will be serving up a whole range of Italian goods as well as $2 espressos; yes, you read that right - $2 ESPRESSOS!
Head back into the space into the open ‘market square’ dining space which will be the absolute hub for both breakfast and lunch. Watch the bar and the kitchen work their magic right in front of your eyes and make sure to spot the dumbwaiter – yes, Piazza Mercato even has a dumbwaiter!
Wander upstairs into a dedicated night-time dining space. With little nooks for romantic dinners or large open spaces for the groups heading out; Piazza Mercato has thought of it all.
Start the day with breakfast at Piazza Mercato for breakfast from 9am-12pm. What is an Italian breakfast I hear you ask? Well, Alfonso and Michaela tell me Italians aren’t huge on breakfast, but knowing how much we Novocastrians love our brekky, they decided to offer an Italian twist on the traditional Aussie breakfast classics.
Smash Avocado on Toast made with crispy pancetta, two poached eggs, ricotta, sautéed mushrooms, and hazelnuts, and the Breakfast Roll Our Way with crispy pancetta, free-range egg, provolone, and buffalo ricotta amongst the offerings.
Moving into lunch, you can expect a whole grand menu covering all the Italian favourites you’d want from any old Italian restaurant plus a whole lot more. From paninis, salads, and bruschette, to Italian sides, house-made pasta, and the all-important Italian desserts.
Whether you’re full or not, we have to highly recommend the Zeppole, an Italian pastry made into three small, deep-fried dough balls filled with Nutella. Drooling yet?
The dinner menu kicks off at 5pm and carries over some of the goods available at lunch but with more focus on pasta, mains cooked on the Charcoal Grill, and even a DIY antipasto board using their goods from the Deli.
The three-storey building demands attention from the street-front, and upon entering it continues to demand your attention. Visually, the space has been pared back to the bare basics with lots of exposed brick with accents of red and pastels throughout.
Every aspect of the space has been considered, including the dining tables; each of which have been made by hand using leftover resources from the previous tenants. Also, to keep with their sustainable practices, the team are introducing a new type of straw; made from pasta of course!
So, get on down to Hunter St and give this newly opened venue a crack and support another local business right in the heart of Newcastle.