North West winner of Brisbane’s best Italian restaurants as voted by bmag readers.

Established in 1995, Mariosarti Ristorante Italiano has garnered a loyal following of patrons and has expanded to include another location at Bardon.

Taking over the reins in 2010, owner Risko Isic came to Mariosarti after a long and interesting journey through life. Moving from Bosnia to Switzerland, he studied Hotel Management and once he completed his degree, he worked in the hospitality and hotel industry for 10 years before immigrating to Australia. Finally, he bit the bullet and bought Mariosarti with Daniel Milos, his business partner. They continue the tradition created by past owners Mario and John and aim to bring you the finest ingredients and produce available, accompanied by some of the finest wines in the world. Sounds like the perfect combination.

Catching the hyperactive Risko at a quiet moment was difficult, but when we did, he explained how grateful he feels for the win and talked about his restaurant with passion and belief.

Why do you think people voted for your restaurant?

We always exceed expectations, I think that makes a huge impact on people’s dining experience. We pride ourselves on offering great food, great service and a great atmosphere.

What dish is the most popular?

Oh, that is such a difficult question as there are so many choices. But one that stands out straightaway is the Spaghetti Alla Marinara, which has Queensland tiger prawns, Moreton Bay bug, scallops and squid sautéed in chilli, garlic and a light Napoli sauce. This is such a popular choice. And also the Pancetta Di Maiale which is Mariosarti’s signature crispy skin pork belly with scented pumpkin and carrot puree, topped with green pea and roasted macadamia pesto.

Who is the head chef?

Ryan McIver.

What makes Mariosarti Ristorante Italiano different to other Italian restaurants?

We have been around for 20 years and are one of the iconic restaurants in Brisbane. It’s a place that makes people feel warm and makes people feel good. Our team of staff are so helpful, friendly and welcoming that people instantly feel comfortable. We really want to make you feel like one of the regulars even if it’s your very first time in the restaurant.