Authentic Italian cooking school and restaurant that’s bringing a little piece of Italy to the Barossa.
Tucked away in the small Barossa own of Angaston, an unassuming shopfront barely hints at the delights that lie within. In this region so renowned for its food, wine and German heritage, Casa Carboni Cooking School & Enoteca is a little slice of Italian authenticity, hospitality and gastronomy. If you’ve ever wondered how to perfect gnocchi, how to shape ravioli or how to simplify your cooking while impressing your guests, then this is the place to visit.
In four hours we turn the most simple of ingredients into delightful luxuries.
Owners Matteo and Fiona Carboni moved to Australia from the Parma region of Italy three years ago. With their young children, Sofia and Filippo, in tow, the family soon forwent their plan to settle in Melbourne when a friend alerted them to the fresh produce and foodie underpinnings of the Barossa. They were hooked and Casa Carboni was born.
The restaurant, cooking school and shop is aptly named – it’s an extension of the Carbonis’ home and this rings especially true on a Saturday morning as friends and regulars drop by for a coffee, a simple bruschetta or just a chat.
For eight of us the morning promises an indulgent day ahead as we gather for one of Matteo’s renowned cooking classes. Today is focused on the food of the Piemonte region in north-western Italy and the four-course menu features vitello tonnato, ravioli del plin, potato gnocchi and a chocolate baked custard known as bonet.
Matteo’s respect for quality ingredients is immediately evident, as is his love for sourcing as much produce as he can from the local area. His food philosophy is simple: “It’s not rocket science,” he says in an accent heavily influenced by his native Italy, “it’s just cooking.”
And isn’t it just – in four hours we turn the most simple of ingredients into delightful luxuries. Starting with the last course first, two classmates help Matteo whip up the bonet, which is later served with rosemary syrup and chocolate crumble. We then get stuck into egg pasta dough, scrutinising the size of the eggs, kneading, chatting and laughing with flour-covered hands. Occasionally Matteo demonstrates a skill while we watch – trussing the veal for the vitello tonnato, for example – but in the main it’s all hands on deck.
The resultant lunch has the feel of a family get-together. At a long table and with a glass of Italian red in hand, you could almost forget you’re only an hour from Adelaide, and not in a tiny Piemont village.
By Tess Fisher
Tess experienced A Taste of Italy: Piemontese Long Lunch Menu, valued at $185 per person. Casa Carboni is open Wednesday to Sunday, 9am to 5pm.
Casa Carboni Italian Cooking School & Enoteca
a: 67 Murray Street, Angaston SA
t: 0415 157 669