For over 30 years this little Italian has been a buzz - As part of our Taste of Time we talk with Johnny Japp co-owner of this iconic Cairns venue.
La Fettuccina’s old country Italian charm has carried it through for over three decades in the same spot in Shields Street.
“We’ve seen a lot come and go,” says co-owner Johnny Japp.
“When this place first opened Shields Street was off the beaten track, over the years it has grown to become a busy home to many other bars and restaurants.”
Johnny and his partner Andrea Pinciarova bought ‘La Fett’ a little over 13 years ago.
“For a couple of years we were managing the restaurant for the previous owner,” says Johnny “so when the opportunity to buy the place came up Andrea said ‘we just have to do this’.”
The already successful restaurant went from strength to strength, and Johnny maintains this is a testament to hard work, high expectations and of course, a love of Italian food.
“We do well as we look after our regulars. I’d say 80% of our trade is repeat locals, and a busy restaurant always gets attention from any hungry tourists!” Johnny said.
The restaurant’s shopfront is small enough to be inconspicuous, but always easy to see marked by a crowd of enthusiastic diners.
“The real key is consistency, we have dishes on our menu that people have been eating here since we opened,” says Johnny. “Our pasta is made fresh every day, and we strive to use local ingredients whenever available. Beyond our usual menu, we also have an ever-changing specials board. We encourage this as an area of creativity for our kitchen team, especially to feature what’s local market fresh and seasonal,” adds Johnny.
When asked what he sees for the future as Johnny laughs and says “I’m not sure we can manage another 30 years, but La Fett
Whether you’re one of the many regulars or haven’t made it there yet, Johnny throws an open invitation. “Drop in for a feed and a vino, 30 years on we know you won’t be disappointed!”
41 Shields St, Cairns City
Open seven nights from 5.00 pm