Maltese heritage meets mouthwatering deli delights at Torquay’s hip new spot, Mortadeli

Maltese heritage meets mouthwatering deli delights at Torquay’s hip new spot, Mortadeli

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Words by Alice McDonald and photography by Nicky Cawood

I bet you’re hungry now.

Something fresh and new has hit Torquay, and no one is complaining. Jake Cassar has moved in and created quite a stir.

With a 60s style Mediterranean deli on Victoria’s Surf Coast, your new neighbour has your lunchtimes sorted.

The Key Takeaways

    • Located at 4-6 Gilbert Street Torquay, the newest kid on the block is Mediterranean style deli: Mortadeli
    • Pick up your luxurious cured meats, sandwiches made fresh and other deli goodies all in one place.
    • Serving a mixture of Maltese and Italian cuisine.

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In the heart of Torquay is the new home to Mortadeli, a modern twist on a retro deli with a whole lot of soul, looking to keep traditions alive, in a modern and simple way.

Located right on Gilbert Street, Mortadeli takes inspiration from old world delis in New York, alimentaris in Italy and bodegas in Spain, resulting in a day to day coffee stop, a go-to for charcuterie, antipasto, finish at-home meals, baked goods, homemade jarred items and pantry staples… and of course sandwiches. It’s here that Mortadeli shines, improving on cult classics.

Introducing the most raved about item on the menu, the Maltese delight:‘Hobs Biz Zeit’. This is a tuna sanga on a completely new level with a tomato base, olives, capers and salted ricotta, a must-have that apparently “every Maltese person takes to the beach”.

Other favourites on the menu include the meatball sub (made with pork and veal polpette, smoked sugo, basil and parmigiana reggiano on ciabatta), the pastrami (New York style smoked beef with Swiss cheese, pickles, kraut, and mustard horseradish on toasted dark rye sourdough), and the Mortadella, a cheese toastie with melted mozzarella and machengo with crispy pmodoro cultured butter crust. Yum!

While we adore the made-to-order sangas, there’s more to love.

Originally going to be called “Maltadela” in homage to Cassar’s Maltese heritage (Cassar thought that “people wouldn’t get it.” However, we thought it was a good pun), this place has all that you need in a deli.

Made to “come in and grab the things [you’d] want for a picnic down at the beach,” Mortadeli stocks only the finest cured meats, that you can get sliced and vacuum packed ready to go, as well as European small goods from Uncle’s plus salami, jamon and more. We recommend while you are at it, washing down these deli delights with a Torquay favourite hard seltzer.

Here me out: it gets cheesier.

Burrata, mozzarella, provolone, parmigiana reggiano – need I say more?

This is all too good to be true, but I promise you, it’s real.


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If you’re more of a visual person, Mortadeli’s Instagram does not disappoint. As a family-focused business, their Instagram invites you into their restaurant but also their home and heritage. And, if you decide to order the Pastrami, you’ll get a taste of Cassar’s Polish mother-in-law’s special homemade sauerkraut.

I bet you didn’t expect this. Along with the retro Italian style decor, there also is merch!! Tote bags as well as the most amazing Mortadeli tee featuring a cartoon bike made out of mortadella and a baguette surfboard.  I mean c’mon! A must-have when strutting down Gilbert Street, stylishly walking past the window at Mortadeli.

Mortadeli’s sandwiches are truly a must-try once and then try a million times more after that. They’re that amazing.

Check out your new favourite local here. Mortadeli: Shop 8 4-6 Gilbert Street Torquay.