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Cenzo Review: Best Italian on Club Street

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Picture of Brian Kennett

Brian Kennett

Amateur Chef and Boozy Traveling Foodie Extraordinaire

Cenzo Review: About halfway up the vibrant enclave of Club Street, Cenzo Italian Restaurant beckons with promises of a culinary experience through the heart of Italy with Chef Drew’s personal spins on some classic artisanal Italian cuisine

Cenzo Review: Contents

Led by the legendary Chef Drew Nocente, formerly of Salted and Hung on Purvis Street, Cenzo is a testament to his passion and artistry that define authentic Italian cuisine. With Chef Drew at the helm, diners can expect a gastronomic experience like no other, that seamlessly blends tradition with innovation, offering a tantalizing selection of dishes that pay homage to Italy’s rich culinary heritage: and not a pizza in site.

cenzo review best italian on club street chef

Chef Drew Nocente’s culinary prowess is rooted in his deep appreciation for the diverse flavors and ingredients of Italy, where his ancestors originate from and what he has learnt from his Mum. Now, at Cenzo Italian Restaurant, Chef Drew brings his expertise to the table, curating a menu that showcases the best of Italian cuisine with a contemporary twist.

At Cenzo, every dish tells a story, from the delicate handmade pastas to the hearty meat dishes infused with the flavors of Italy’s countryside. With an unwavering commitment to quality and authenticity, Chef Drew and his team meticulously source the finest ingredients, ensuring that each plate is a true reflection of Italy’s culinary history. 

Join Islifearecipe through our Cenzo Review as we graze and guzzle at Cenzo Italian Restaurant, with our BFF Chef Drew Nocente passion for Italian cuisine shines through in every bite. This is going to be so good!!!

cenzo review best italian on club street interior
cenzo review best italian on club street tuna tartar

Marinated tuna tartar, piquillo peppers. Clearly, this is not one for yours truly: Mr non-piscatorial, but Wifey said it was spectacular. You get four of these bad boys too, so what a spanning starter for sharing – as we did. Also how vibrant is that plating – it could almost be akin to an Italian flag… I wonder…

cenzo review best italian on club street bone marrow

Bone marrow, oxtail & pickles. It’s like unctuous roast bone marrow with an oxtail unctuous gravy, with pickles to give some palate cleansing: all in one bite. This was insanely good, like the best in the breed I have ever eaten bone marrow dish. Top of the shop, stellar. Bone marrow angels were singing at the tops of their voices. This is INCREDIBLE!!!

cenzo review best italian on club street lardo

Cured pork fat, spiced cheese & truffle honey. Oh my goodness gracious me. Stop the bus. What an absolute belter of a dish. We used to order the lardo when Drew had Salted and Hung, and now he has taken it up a notch or ten with this dish. It’s salty, savoury, hot, sweet, crunchy, and pickled, all in one bite. Drew, your Dad would be super-proud, this is charcuterie genius my friend!!!

cenzo review best italian on club street specials pasta

Drew threw this in the ring because we ordered no pasta. Not one dish. With hindsight, yeah, that was a strange thing to do. So getting this balanced it out. And BOSH, this bad boy was incredible. A gamey smell, but not so on the taste. It was Italian sausage in a warming chilli ragu sauce, Pecorino cheese (I think) and fresh greens. 

Gigli was the homemade pasta, a small, fluted dried pasta, is rolled in the shape of a cone or flower (they called it Tulip) with ruffled edges. The word gigli is Italian for “lilies”. Gigli pairs well with thicker sauces, as we had, and works very well in a casserole.

Such a beautiful pasta that I will call out as one of the best I have ever eaten in my 55 years on this planet. Jude ended up stealing this one from the four adults, he loved it so. Incredible pasta!!!

cenzo review best italian on club street sirloin steak

Grass-fed rib eye, beef fat potatoes. Yeah, I am always a bit skeptical of steaks, because I think I cook a mean one. This bad boy was a stunner. Cooked in that Josper grill so you get a chargrill bark and smoke on this bad boy. Seasoned to perfection, cooked to a little over what I like but that was Val’s choice of medium. Beautiful flavours, Pink2Pink and super-tender. Great job!!!

cenzo review best italian on club street pulpo

Sorry Chef Drew, but Lavo Restaurant still commands the Marysol’s #1 spot in the Pulpo League for Singapore. She really liked it but it did not topple the leading position yet. I love the plating: one beautiful-looking dish!

cenzo review best italian on club street cohinillo

1/4 roasted suckling pig, tomato & slaw: 45 min waiting time. Oh my. A heavenly piggy experience. So soft, tender and juicy with a perfect crunch of skin atop. Lovely seasoning, and salted to perfection. This is a cracker and you need this in your life at least once!!! WOOF!!! Sorry, OINK!!!

cenzo review best italian on club street drews tirimasu

Coffee, mascarpone & chocolate. As light as a feather, this is a beautiful dessert. Wafer thin, no, but as light as wafer thin, yes. An absolute cracker.

cenzo review best italian on club street pavlova

Pavlova, mixed berries & strawberry sorbet. Damn, this was good. Part of the set menu so I can’t give an individual price. Citrus, sweet, berry-licious, sour, crunchy, chewy, just all round spanking!!!

cenzo review best italian on club street gold'n gay

Chocolate ganache, honeycomb & salted caramel ice cream. Yeah, this is a knockout. I love a savoury dessert, and this was that all the way from start to finish. Texture and flavour explosions. Yeah, baby!!!

cenzo review best italian on club street limoncello

Homemade Limoncello. No over-the-top sugar, and sticky consistency like others. No, this is sour and citrus massive, with overtones of slight bitter from lemon peel. It is KILLER. Easily the best I have ever had. #GreatJobCenzo WOOF!!!

cenzo review best italian on club street open kitchen

I simply love the kitchen, and Chef I think may have had a hand in choosing our seating because we were right next to it, and then later Mauricio from Papi’s Tacos was in our seat. Also, from and centre, a stunning Josper oven with charcoal that is charring up the food to deliciousness!!! Super-envious.

cenzo review best italian on club street josper grill

We arrived for our booking at 12:30 PM and left at circa 9:00 PM. Yes, EGHT AND A HALF hours. We grazed, we guzzled, we laughed, we chatted, we chilled, we sang, we had fun, and we were happy. It has a magical ambience that leaves you wanting more, and more, and more… #BeProud Chef Drew and crew, you have got something so special here.

cenzo review best italian on club street friends
cenzo review best italian on club street the boys

Chef Drew, Griggsy and moi… Quite early in to our eight-hour shift…

cenzo review best italian on club street papi's tacos

And then Mauricio, AKA Papi’s Taco, AKA Mr MEZCAL… Bless him. This is now towards the end of the eight-hour shift…

cenzo review best italian on club street holy canoli

Spencer and I met Chef Drew at the recent Beef from Spain event at Alkaff Mansion. He had a moan at me that I had not been since opening over a year ago, and that I write too much about Spanish restaurants – haha. Point taken I committed there and then to come and do a Cenzo Review soonest. Today was that day of delivering to my comittment.

Chef Drew is now Managing Director of a group of sister restaurants, namely: Barrio | Kulto | Chicco and one more to come which Drew is opening up next week. Watch this space for an Islifearecipe.net launch review of that.

In conclusion, dining at Cenzo Italian Restaurant on Club Street is an experience that transcends mere culinary indulgence— Drew and crew literally take you through the heart and soul of Italy, with an Ozzie accent.

From the moment you enter, you’re enveloped in an ambiance that effortlessly captures the essence of Italian hospitality, making every visit feel like a cherished memory in the making: and we’ll be back soon for more and more of that.

With Chef Drew Nocente’s, and his crew’s masterful creations gracing the menu, each dish is a testament to the rich heritage of Italy’s artisanal food, prepared with a perfect balance of tradition and Ozzie Ozzie Ozzie innovation.

Whether you’re savoring the silky texture of handmade pasta or reveling in the robust unctuous flavors of bone marrow, dining at Cenzo is an adventure, it really is, for the senses that leaves a lasting impression: we’re all still WhatsApping each other today about last night.

With impeccable service and a commitment to excellence evident in every detail, Cenzo Italian Restaurant on Club Street is more than just a place to enjoy a meal—it’s a destination where food lovers come to celebrate the art of Italian cuisine, relax, have fun, chat and while the time away. Time stands still here… ENJOY!!!

CENZO Comes From Vincenzo, Which Means “Conqueror”.

 

Paying tribute to his Italian roots has always been at the forefront of Australian Chef Drew Nocente’s culinary direction.

The other significance of the name comes from Drew’s father, Vincenzo, who first taught him the mastery of charcuterie and the importance of respecting produce on their family farm in Australia.

Cenzo was created out of Drew’s desire to cook out of passion by tapping into his Italian heritage whilst giving a modern Aussie vibe, a mix of tradition and modernity.

Opening Hours

  • Monday to Saturday
  • Lunch12:00 – 14:30
  • Dinner17:30 – 22:30
  • Sunday closed

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