Sunday, October 11, 2015

Besser - Surry Hills

Besser is a casual Italian joint settled among the old collection of Besser blocks. It gives off a relaxed vibe and an old-school style. The waiters are heavily accented but quite friendly. Given the concreteness of the restaurant, it gets super noisy as human voices bounce around the room.

As a party of four, we decided to just order dishes to share. We opted for two entree dishes - the meatballs and the pork fingers. The meatballs were reasonably bite sized and packed full of cheesy flavour. There was also quite a delicious tomatoey sauce that covered the meatballs. The pork fingers were lightly crumbed and eaten with an oniony-yoghurt sauce. There was also an intense mustard flavour to the soft pulled-pork innards.
We chose three pastas. Two of the pastas were part of their specials for the day. Due to the noise and the waiter's accent, I don't quite remember exactly what they were, just that one was a creamy risotto with scampi, and the other was a pappardelle with sausage and mushrooms. The risotto was quite tasty - scampi give or take, but the cheesy creaminess and the al-dente rice created pretty awesome rich flavours all round. The pappardelle was not bad either. Slightly creamy, slightly tomatoey and again, perfectly cooked pasta. Whilst both pastas were delicious, what surprised me most was the gnocchi with turkey that we ordered. Not that it was better than the other pastas. Just that I've never liked gnocchi (like EVER) but this gnocchi is beginning to change my mind. The gnocchi was really fluffy and pillowy - not dense or carby like the normal ones, and the turkey meat added the right amount of saltiness to it all.
Other than the pastas, we also ordered the grilled scotch mushroom (sorry about the photo.... I didn't take it...). Having no expectations of what a scotch mushroom was like, it ended up as a plate of thin grilled scotch fillet steaks with juicy mushrooms and wilted greens. The steak was cooked well - tender enough. But I think I would have been happy enough with just tons of the mushrooms (which was really flavourful as it soaked in all the meat juices) and the wilted greens.
Dessert-wise, nothing really appealed. And, Messina was just next door (even the waiter agreed). So... Messina we went.

Food - 7.5/10
Service - 7/10
Ambiance - 6.5/10
Value for money - 7/10
Overall - 28/40

3/355 Crown Street
Surry Hills
Tel: (02) 9331 1611