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Cheap eats – Santa Lucia (Kingston)

By Alexandra Craig 8 July 2015 8

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After my not-so-great cheap eats experience at Jamie’s Italian a few weeks ago, I was keen to get that big bowl of pasta I so badly wanted but for a reasonable price as well.

I decided to pay a visit to Santa Lucia in Kingston to check out their lunch special. I used to frequent Santa Lucia all the time when I lived in Kingston but hadn’t been in a while.

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Santa Lucia does a $14.90 lunch special on Friday and Saturday. I am pretty sure it used to be a Monday-Friday special, however its trading hours have changed and now it is only open for lunch towards the end of the week. It’s a nice treat for Friday lunch anyhow!

You can choose from a variety of pastas, focaccias and pizza of the day, and you get a serving of bread as well as a glass of wine or a soft drink. Santa Lucia also offers a $9.90 express takeaway lunch special that promises to be ready within 10 minutes.

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The bread and drinks came very quickly and the bread was delicious. Crunchy crusts and soft inside. I was so excited about the bread that it was nearly gone before I remembered to take a photo. I could have just eaten bread the whole time, but instead I ordered the spaghetti bolognese (but changed the spaghetti to penne), and my partner ordered the carbonara penne.

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I didn’t have extremely high standards for pasta that cost less than $15, but I was pleasantly surprised! It was actually really good. An extremely decent serving (much bigger than the one at Jamie’s) and the sauce was one of the better bologneses that I’ve had in restaurants.

I had a tiny bit of the carbonara and while I’m not big on white sauce pastas, I did like this one. My partner really enjoyed it and said he would definitely order it again.

I think $14.90 is a total bargain for pasta, bread and a beverage. Especially so given that the meals were of a good quality. On a side note, Santa Lucia is also very airy, bright and most of all – extremely clean. Bonus points to them.

What: Santa Lucia Trattoria 
Where: 15 Tench Street Kingston (entry via Giles Street – opposite newsagency)
Opening hours: 3.00pm-10.00pm (Tuesday – Thursday), 11.00am – late (Friday), 9.00am – late (Saturday), 9.00am – 2.30pm (Sunday)
Website: http://santalucia.com.au/ 

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8 Responses to
Cheap eats – Santa Lucia (Kingston)
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Zan 5:53 pm 03 Sep 15

Hubby and I felt like some spag bol for lunch today so we went to Santa Lucia for their lunch special. I also wanted a full bodied good italian coffee. Sadly that was not to be. Although the cup size was big, the coffee was very watery without much taste. Black mark number one. Service is good and quick. The noise level was okay. The background music was in the background, not in the foreground like 99% of eating places in Canberra. The lunch special of $14.90 includes bread and a glass of wine, which was good. The spag bol was disappointing to say the least. The plate was not very warm at all, so the meal cooled quickly. It was rather bland as well. Black mark number two. We decided not to have dessert as we didn’t want another bland dish.

I remember Santa of old when it was in Kennedy Street, the food and atmosphere was superb.

JC 4:50 pm 09 Jul 15

marcothepolopony said :

I miss Santa Lucia being at the Swinger Hill shops. Ate there on a regular basis.

When did it close?

rubaiyat 2:09 pm 09 Jul 15

Grrrr said :

Alexandra Craig said :

Yup – my mum makes really good carbonara (i.e the proper way) like you’ve described. I’m yet to find an actual carbonara in a restaurant in Australia. 🙁

Maybe because they don’t want to risk Salmonella poisoning their customers, and can’t be bothered finding pasteurised eggs.

The heat from the pasta is probably borderline on the amount required to kill the bacteria if it’s present.

That, and pre-prepared sauces are way easier.

1. You use fresh eggs, not the months old eggs from the “Fresh Food People”.

2. The pasta is scalding hot and the eggs are cooked almost instantaneously

3. Cream is the best feedstock for bacteria, as well as clogging up your arteries

4. Show me the millions of dead Italians, who KNOW how to cook. Something that eludes so many here.

This is a repeat of the nonsense that kept Gus fighting windmills his whole life in the wasteland that was Canberra: “The land where knowledge comes to die”.

Grrrr 12:49 pm 09 Jul 15

Alexandra Craig said :

Yup – my mum makes really good carbonara (i.e the proper way) like you’ve described. I’m yet to find an actual carbonara in a restaurant in Australia. 🙁

Maybe because they don’t want to risk Salmonella poisoning their customers, and can’t be bothered finding pasteurised eggs. The heat from the pasta is probably borderline on the amount required to kill the bacteria if it’s present.

That, and pre-prepared sauces are way easier.

Alexandra Craig 11:30 am 09 Jul 15

rubaiyat said :

Carbonarra should be strictly pancetta and fresh egg cooked by the heat of the pasta alone.

Not a “white sauce dish” (usually cream), which a standard commercial abomination in this country.

Cooked correctly with lots of fresh cracked paper and served immediately, it is a wonderful healthy and refreshingly light meal. I sometimes add just cooked peas as a variation. Taught me by my ex-girlfiend’s Tuscan Mum who was a brilliant cook.

Yup – my mum makes really good carbonara (i.e the proper way) like you’ve described. I’m yet to find an actual carbonara in a restaurant in Australia. 🙁

rubaiyat 10:28 pm 08 Jul 15

Carbonarra should be strictly pancetta and fresh egg cooked by the heat of the pasta alone.

Not a “white sauce dish” (usually cream), which a standard commercial abomination in this country.

Cooked correctly with lots of fresh cracked paper and served immediately, it is a wonderful healthy and refreshingly light meal. I sometimes add just cooked peas as a variation. Taught me by my ex-girlfiend’s Tuscan Mum who was a brilliant cook.

Kalliste 7:46 pm 08 Jul 15

I’ve been there a few times with a friend who knows the owners, the lunch specials were tasty and I also enjoyed the delicious bread.

It’s been about 7 months since I went and I do believe it did used to be more days of the week they did the special.

marcothepolopony 10:44 am 08 Jul 15

I miss Santa Lucia being at the Swinger Hill shops. Ate there on a regular basis.

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