Seafood Restaurant Melbourne

The Paesano Group is a family restaurant group which owns and operates Paesano Restaurant Knox Ozone, Eccoqui Restaurant Frankston, Short Black Café Camberwell and the newly launched Paesano International Buffet Wheelers Hill.


Frank Capuzzi and Angelo LoMonaco set up their first restaurant back in 1997 called Michelangelo Burwood. Their aim was a shared desire to bring delicious home-style Italian cooking and warm friendly service to the Eastern suburbs.

Michelangelo’s was an immediate success, with customers queuing to sample the “calalinga” home-style cooking. This success led to a number of restaurants being opened by the group, all with the same home-made recipes.

Frank’s mother, Clara, was a key figure in the kitchen and became legendary for her hand-made gnocchi, sauces and desserts - many of these recipes were handed down to her as a girl by her grandmother in her native Abruzzo. 

Paesano International Buffet

Frank and Angelo attribute their past success to bringing new restaurant styles to the eastern suburbs, and this inspired the idea of a full blown buffet dining concept for their new site on Ferntree Gully Rd Wheelers Hill. Now customers are no longer limited to enjoying one type of cuisine - you can satisfy the entire family at Paesano International Buffet.

After extensively researching buffets both locally and overseas, they decided the key to success would be to combine top quality food with the theatre of live cooking stations. This way, the customer can see dishes being prepared and cooked fresh to order in front of them.

Paesano International Buffet offers a choice of delicious dishes from Italy, Japan, China, India and other countries around the globe. The buffet also offers an extensive seafood range including fresh prawns, oysters and crab.

Leave some room for dessert as the buffet also offers a huge range of freshly baked home- made delicacies. This all makes Paesano International Buffet the ideal choice for families and groups.

Frank’s mother, Clara, will once again be in the kitchen, hand making her famous gnocchi, pastas and desserts, based on family recipes from the 19th century.

Paesano International Buffet team

Ali Faraji (Head Chef Western)

Ali joined the Paesano Group in 2000 as an apprentice chef and today he holds the esteemed position of Head Chef.

Ali worked directly with the owners in various restaurants, and soon was able to encapsulate the “calalinga” cooking style of the family. His attributes are his passion and dedication to the group and to his cooking.

Ali will head up the western cuisine including cooking your special dish for you – you will be able to meet Ali in the Italian section of the buffet.

Og Kusumapala (Head Chef Asian)

Originally from Sri Lanka, Og studied and travelled extensively to learn the cuisines of the world from each country’s master chefs.

Og is an award-winning chef who has worked at some of the world’s top hotels and resorts, including the Grand Cayman Beach Suites, the Hyatt Regency and Le Meridien.

His experience in preparing international cuisine spans the globe and includes Indian, Chinese, Western, and Japanese dishes, including sushi.

With a passion for the finest produce, and a determination to minimise waste, Og considers Paesano International Buffet to be a dream opportunity, which allows him the opportunity to create a truly international menu of 60 different kinds of dishes, and interact with the customers for whom he will cook.

Wayan Wastra

Wayan is an experienced sushi chef, skilled in both traditional and modern sushi techniques, and in Japanese teppanyaki and tempura cooking. He has worked for a number of top hotels in the Cayman Islands, including the Ritz Carlton, and in Bali and Bahrain.

Noel Jacinto

Noel is an experienced chef in Chinese and Italian cuisines, most recently working for a 5 star hotel and casino in Macau, China. He has worked for hotels and restaurants in China, the Philippines and Qatar, and has extensive experience of “cook-to-order” buffets.

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