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Pilu at Freshwater Restaurant Review: For more than a decade, chef Giovanni Pilu’s surfside restaurant, located in a heritage-listed beach cottage refurbished to be more Hamptons than Harbord (the suburb’s former name), has been renowned for its authentic, contemporary regional Italian cuisine. Sardinian food requires water to complement it. Not in a glass, you understand, but waterside, as it is in its native island. Here at pocket-size Freshwater Beach on Sydney’s northern beaches, Pilu found the ideal spot for his venue. Its glowing Mediterranean colors match a menu where Sardinian flavors come alive. Pilu, with chef Matteo Zamboni, melds the best local, seasonal produce with the highest quality products from Italy when necessary. Weekdays, lunch or dinner may see dishes such as a salad of burrata, fennel, celery heart and bottarga followed by whole-meal strozzapreti, lamb ragù, saba and pecorino. It’s worth trying the Melanda Park free-range oven-roasted suckling pig, when available. Then, what’s better than a dolco of Sardinian fried pastry filled with ricotta and sultanas, served with honey? Ideal for groups is the Menu Sardo for the whole table. Weekends bring a three-course Menu Tradizionale. There’s always the fragile Sardinian bread, carta musica, on hand. Wines are from the Italian-rich cellar, which also offers a good range of regional NSW labels as well as Sardinian varietals. Knowledgeable staff can recommend the best pairings for dishes.