Lucio Galletto OAM hails from a Ligurian family of restaurateurs. His first job in Sydney in 1977 was at the fondly remembered Natalino's Restaurant in Kings Cross, where he quickly became the Manager.
Lucio's first appeared in Balmain in 1981, then transferred to Paddington in 1983. Lucio has proudly continued the splendid family tradition of exceptional hospitality with his wife, Sally, and their two children Matteo and Michela.
For Lucio it is not only about the philosophy of the restaurant, but also a reflection of his well known passion for art.
"Food and art for me is like the air that I breathe. I grew up in the family restaurant in Italy where we had an art gallery, so it has always been in my blood. It is very important for me personally and also I think for our customers as well. The combination of great food, great service and great art on the walls is, in my view, one of the best dining experiences you can imagine."
The Lucio's kitchen remains true to his motto 'We follow the season, not the fashion'.
Lucio's has been consistently recognized over many years and currently holds, among many other awards, the coveted 2 hats in the SMH Good Food Guide and the Insegna del Ristorante Italiano, a plaque personally presented by the Italian President in recognition of excellence in Italian cuisine outside of Italy.
On a more personal note Lucio was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia in the Queen?s Birthday Honours June 2008. 'For service to the community through contributions as a restaurateur and author, and to the support of arts organisations.'
Lucio was also the proud recipient of the SMH Silver Service Award in 2009.
Lucio's was the first Italian restaurant in Australia where eating the pasta made me think I was back in Italy.
The biggest problem you face at Lucio's is what to order, all dishes excite at first reading.
Prosciutto, fig & artichoke salad with gorgonzola crumb, Ham hock broth with borlotti beans and parmesan & suet dumplings, Lightly smoked kingfish carpaccio with ruby grapefruit, truffle peaches & farro or Grilled calamari salad with saffron risoni, toasted almonds, edamame & chili...you choose?
As for those special pastas, they are all sensational. Fazzoletti, black handkerchief pasta with cuttlefish, mussels, prawns & chili, Beetroot gnocchi with pancetta, goats cheese & rocket or Red wine risotto with broad beans, ox tail & pan fried bone marrow.
Mains are just as exotic. Balsamic roasted duck with Brussel sprouts & fig vinaigrette, Spatchcock breast deboned & stuffed, confit legs & wings on baby carrots & snow pea shoots, Veal medallions with grilled asparagus, horseradish creamed leeks & mushrooms or Poached baby barramundi fillet & prawns, cucumber & celery pickle, pecorino & chili.
For dessert the safest is the Tasting Plate. It can consist of such wonders as Whipped ricotta filled cannoli with strawberry & passionfruit salad, Herb panna cotta with pine nut & honey torte & braised rhubarb, Five textured chocolate: pastry, ganache, mousse, sorbet & white chocolate foam or Pineapple & lemon semifreddo roll, candied hazelnuts, nutella sauce & caramelised pineapple.
Dining at Lucio's is an experience you will never forget.