Time Out Melbourne

The 'burbs get a chance to double buzz with booze and bocce

Pallino’s premise is simple: bar and bocce. It's built in a 1950s espresso bar for locals, by a local. It doesn’t aim to be ground breaking, but it certainly has provided great, new ground for the stomping.

Louise Zelencich’s aim as an owner is to present something for her neighbours, being a Thornbury local herself. Her attitude is open, welcoming and reassuring, responding to each drink order with, “Do you live around here?” It’s clear she is filling a gap in the market, as most answers are "yes", with a table of suits in the front hanging around from lunch threatening to come back soon. Yes, it’s that kind of a place.

The drinks on offer aren’t extensive, but they’re crowd-pleasing. Most of the booze is Australian if you don’t count the spirits shelf, but the familiar beers of Mountain Goat, 4 Pines, Little Creatures, Stone and Wood and White Rabbit are great alternative to Coopers. The wine list is short and inoffensive, but the real focus of Pallino is their cocktails. Pallino have proudly listed classics like Manhattans, Negronis, and Martinis (anyway you like them!) next to their own Pallino of Galliano vanilla, cloudy apple and lime. Our only issue is the way they’ve made their Manhattan; built in a coupe with ice when it should be stirred down and served up.

Pallino knows where it shines, so it doesn’t bog itself down with food offerings. Boards of salumi featuring prosciutto, mild salami and perfectly spiced porchetta, paninis, cheese plates and olives are as far as they’ll go. If you’re feeling like something more substantial, Pallino will ring in orders from the Moor’s Head next door to be delivered straight to your table. Smart.

As for the bocce, it’s a weekend thing as their courtyard is deservedly full in the evenings. If Pallino’s aim is to get you buzzed, they have certainly achieved that with their bar and bocce, but where do the espressos come in? A glance up at the bar would answer that for you: espresso Martinis. Rack 'em up – that’s a double buzz.

Find out more about the Time Out Pub Awards

First published on . Updated on .

By Jess Ho   |  

Pallino details

Address
790 High St, Thornbury 3071

Open Wed, Thu 4pm-late; Fri 4pm-1am; Sat 2pm-1am; Sun noon-11pm.

Pallino website

Pallino map

Report a problem with this page

Restaurants and bars nearby

The Back Room Bar

55m - Thornbury’s High Street is experiencing a bars boom. You’ve got yourself...

Black Ruby Bakeries

106m - A health-conscious bakery that makes bread, bagels and buns safe for...

Nest Coworking

111m - A shared creative space which occasionally hosts events such as the...

More restaurants and bars nearby

Other venues nearby

The Thornbury Theatre

57m - The grand dame of the inner north was established in 1926 and is dripping...

Prana House

75m - A newly renovated yoga space in Thornbury, Prana House is a spacious home...

Department of History

155m - The mixture of eclectic one-off pieces and approachable vintage furnishings...

Perimeter Books

175m - Perimeter Books is just plain lovely to be in. Its crisp white walls,...

More venues nearby
Tonka

Tonka

The Coda crew have turned a notorious nightclub into a schmick mod-Indian restaurant

Vue De Monde

Vue De Monde

Vue De Monde still represents the pinnacle of fine-dining in Melbourne, if you can get in

Cookie

Cookie

Cookie offers a heady blend of children’s books and grown-up drinks

Readers' comments, reviews, hints and pictures

Community guidelines

blog comments powered by Disqus