Italian eating in east Melbourne doesn’t get any better than this. Those are big words, but Il Sogno on Whitehorse Road deliver in a big way on likely expectations for a restaurant with one of Guy Grossi’s trainees, chef Anthony Giarratana, at the helm. Il Sogno means ‘dream’ in Italian, and the name is obvious pretty much straight after you arrive at this elegant but casual eatery in Mont Albert. Traditional pasta is handmade fresh on site daily, ingredients are sourced from the freshest and best local producers available, and the menu combines age-old Italian traditions with some dashes of Giarratana’s innovation and flair. If forced to choose, we recommend the heavenly cavatelli pasta with eggplant, cherry tomato sauce, basil and buffalo mozzarella followed by the anatra arrosto (roasted duck breast, confit leg, Roman-style gnocchi and porcini jus), finished off by a decadent chocolate mango parfait, but really you can’t go wrong whatever you take from Il Sogno’s spectacular menu.