date of visit: Tuesday 4 March 2014
There are way too many interesting bars opening up around Adelaide at the moment. One of the things that I loved about Leeds was the small bar scene. Yes – there were the arena sized Wetherspoons, the cheesy nightclubs and the shopping (oh, yeah, I never got into that!) but there were also so many small independent bars where you could get something interesting to drink.
This is something that Adelaide has lacked for far too long. Too many of Adelaide’s old pubs have had the homogeneous makeover treatment and, if you want to feel trendy, you can have a boring pint in many shiny establishments.
I don’t know if it’s the small bar legislation, but a bar revolution has been under way for quite a while and now, when faced with an all too infrequent drink after work, I find myself spoilt for choice.
Tuesday’s drink after work was postponed for a week which meant even more bar-prevarication on my part … but I held my nerve and headed along to Il Mondo Caffè Bar, located on James Place. Surprisingly central to Rundle Mall, for anyone needing a restorative retail tonic …
Il Mondo opens at 9:30 so breakfast, coffee and lunch are well catered for. At lunch and after work (from 5:30pm) you can indulge in ‘il aperitivo’: a drink and free run at Italian bar snacks for $15. If you’re up for more serious food there’s plenty available, including my all time favourite, spaghetti con alio, olio e peperoncino.
Unfortunately I was there for a super quick drink so I couldn’t indulge in any aperitivo snacks and I certainly couldn’t wolf down a bowl of pasta (well, I could have … but at home, Andy and dinner were both waiting for me) so I had to console myself with the wine list.
The wine list is (unsurprisingly) Italian wine heavy with pretty much everything available by the glass (and mostly under $10). It is SO refreshing to see a wine list which doesn’t start by listing New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc …
As it was a warm day, white wine was definitely in order. I’ve recently become a little concerned about the quality of wine by the glass being poured in Adelaide so when it came to ordering a glass of Falanghina (there are two Italian Falanghinas on the wine list – on its own, impressive!) I was cautious. After all, it was just gone 5 so would I be drinking from yesterday’s open bottle? And how many people in Adelaide are actually drinking Falanghina at the moment?
I’ve clearly spent far too much time thinking about the ‘stale wine by the glass conundrum’ because I’ve actually come up with an approach to counter it.
I approached the bar and asked “which of the two Falanghinas would you recommend and which have you opened most recently?”. This enquiry was met with a broad smile, an immediate recommendation and the offer to open a new bottle for us. You can imagine – I was sold.
My friend and I sat at a wine barrel outside, had a couple of glasses of wine and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. of course, the highest praise of all is that Il Mondo is definitely now on my “to return to” list.
And let’s face it – today’s Friday and you should really try somewhere new for that after work drink!
Il Mondo Caffè Bar
20 James Place
Adelaide SA 5000
phone: (08) 8212 3626