The third episode of the series was Murder and Mozzarella. Here is the synopsis:
An old lady is being strangled in her kitchen by a man dressed in black his face is covered by a bandanna. There is a struggle and the whole kitchen is in disarray. In the struggle the lady's rosary breaks and the beads drop all over the floor. The struggle continues the lady tries to grab a knife and a pan to defend herself but is unsuccessful and is strangled to death.
Dot and Hugh are in church as Hugh is learning about the catholic faith. The priest tells Hugh that there are new rules and doctrines that he will have to accept and Hugh agrees to the conversion. A gentleman runs into the church and asks the priest to come quickly as he thinks someone has killed Nona Louisa. Hugh asks where Nona Louisa is and the man says in her restaurant. Hugh tells them man to show him and tells the priest to stay where he is. The rush to the crime scene.
Dot and Hugh arrive at the restaurant and see Nona Louisa spread out on the floor and the whole kitchen in disarray. Hugh asks the man is Nona Louisa is his mother and he says 'mother in law'. They notice large footprints in the spilled sauce. Hugh notes they lead to the back door and Dot notices the bruises coming up on the old woman's throat. The man mutters in Italian and mentioned the 'Camorra'. Hugh asks him if he mentioned the Camorra. Dot mentions there is a telephone in the church and says they must call Phryne. Hugh says no they must call Jack. Dot reminds him that it is her church as she does the flowers and he is not even converted. Hugh goes to walk through the door but Dot pushes past him saying 'ladies first'
Phryne and Jack pull up at the restaurant at the same time. Phryne tells Jack it is good timing but she had further to travel. The gentleman comes out of the restaurant to greet Jack with Dot. He tells Jack it is very bad and asks him to come inside.
Inside Dot is telling Phryne she is not sure if the marks on the lady's neck are from bruising or rigamortis. Phryne tells her to trust her first instinct as she is face up so it is more likely to be bruising. The gentleman consuls his daughter telling her to be strong like her Nona was. Phryne introduces herself and begins to ask a question when Jack cuts in to question Guido. Jack asks who could be behind it and Guido says it is the man who set fire to the restaurant and killed his wife. Jack ask him if they could have a more private chat and asks Hugh to take a statement. Guido tells him he knows who it is just like before and Jack says he will take care of it. Hugh leads Guido and his daughter away and Phryne tells Jack she feels like she is missing half of the conversation and Jack says he is happy to keep it that way. Jack leaves and Phryne asks Dot what that was about. Dot tells her the man mentioned the Camorra earlier and Phryne chases after Jack telling him she would not be frightened off by the Camorra. Jack says he knew Phryne wouldn't be frightened more drawn to it like a moth to a flame which is why he is keeping her out of it.
Outside the restaurant a lady is giving Guido's daughter flowers. The daughter tells Guido they will have to turn customers away and he says of all nights. Phryne asks if it is the festival of the Madonna. Guido says yes it is the biggest night of the year as people come from everywhere to eat Nona's food and that year she was making a special dish she had not made before. Guido is called away and the daughter says she has seen Dot before. Dot says at church and Phryne asks her to let them help carry the flowers.
In the garden the girl is trimming the flowers. She tells them her Nona's death will be the end of the restaurant. Dot asks the girl, Mariana if she doesn't cook and she says no she only helps out in the kitchen as her Nona's dishes were special and from the old country. Phryne asks Mariana if she had helped that day and Mariana says her Nona had sent her on an errand as they were out of butter. She says things might have been different if she had been there but Dot tells her she might have been with her Nona now. Phryne tells Mariana her father won't talk and asks who did this. Mariana says everyone knows it is no mystery but her father quiets her before she can say more. Phryne tells him he must speak up as someone must do something as nothing will change. Guido tells her not to worry as something will be done and leaves Phryne notices an open box of bullets and begs Mariana to tell her where Guido is going so she can stop him as he has a gun. Mariana tells her there has been a feud with Stranos, another restaurant.
Guido burst into the restaurant and Vincenzo argues with him Guido pushes him away and pulls the gun as Phryne burst in and calls to Jack to be careful as he has a gun. Guido accuses Vincenzo of killing Nona Louisa. Phryne tells him he is just making things worse and Guido says it cannot be worse as his restaurant is finished. Jack tells Guido to give him the gun but Guido asks who is next his daughter, Vincenzo's sister ect and fires at the restaurants sign. Phryne wrestles the gun from his hand and points it at Guido. Jack tells Guido to go to the station with him now. Guido says Vincenzo killed Nona Louisa and he gets arrested? but Jack tells Guido that he told him he would take care of it . Guido says he can see how Jack takes care of it by eating and drinking with the Strano family. Concetta helps Jack put his coat on and brushes it down (which Phryne notices) and Jack orders Vincenzo to the station too.
At the station Phryne and Jack are questioning Vincenzo. Vincenzo asks why he is being question when Guido shot at him. He says Guido should be charged and not just for this but what he did to Fabrizzi. Phryne asks who Fabrizzi is and Vincenzo says his sisters husband who was gunned down in cold blood. He says they should ask Guido who shot him. Jack asks Vincenzo where he was at the time of Nona's death and Vincenzo says he was at the pictures. Jack asks if anyone can confirm this and Vincenzo shows him his ticket stub.
Later in his office Phryne is turning over Vincenzo's ticket stub in her hands. She asks Jack if he believes Vincenzo. Jack said if he was the murderer you would think he would come up with a better alibi. Jack tells Phryne this is why last years investigation did not get very far. Phryne asks how the feud started and Jack tells her Fabrizzi tried to burn down Stranos restaurant and a week later he was gunned down in front of 10 witnesses none of whom saw anything. Jack says Fabrizzi had links to the Camorra.Phryne asks if Fabrizzi was the woman at the restaurants husband as Jack seemed to know her quite well. Jack says yes and tells Phryne Concetta is an 'old friend' a term he's heard used.
Outside Jack's office Guido and Vincenzo are arguing in Italian. Hugh is trying to break up the argument. Jack tells them to stop but in Italian Phryne tells them to please continue. She tells Jack they were mentioning an incident at the docks. She says whatever happened at the docks started the feud. Mariana bursts in and Guido tells her it is OK no thanks to Vincenzo. The pair begin to argue again and Jack tells them that they will have to call a truce otherwise he will write up Guido for the firearms charge and Vincenzo for serving alcohol after 6pm.
Hugh and Dot are in the church and the priest asks Hugh if he has read the pamphlet her gave him. Hugh says he has and asks the father about the page about the catholic family where it says 'a wife must in all things obey her husband'. The priest says that is one of the central tenants of the church's teachings. Dot is clearly not happy at hearing this.
Phryne arrives at Stranos and greets Concetta late in the evening. Concetta invites Phryne to eat with them.Concetta pours them wine and asks Phryne what she wants. Phryne asks about the feud and about the Camorra. She asks Concetta if her husband was a member. Concetta says she knows nothing about her husbands business. She did not really know him as her grandfather arranged the match. She says she did not chose her husband but she was a good wife. Concetta asks Phryne if she is a friend of Jacks. Phryne says yes a friend and ask and you. Concetta says yes as Jack tried very hard to find who killed his husband and since then he has dinner there regularly. Phryne says Jack must like the food and Concetta agrees. The pair share a smile.
Concettas father approaches and asks if he can join them. He urges Phryne to eat. Phryne does so and says the food is exquisite. Concetta says her fathers family were chefs generations back. Her father says that his food is real cooking not like Nona who is 'housewife cooking'. Phryne asks about the special dish that Nona was meant to be cooking and Concettas father says he knows the dish because it was from his familys recipe book that the lady stole. Phryne asks why she would make the dish now and Concetta says to cause trouble.
Later that night Phryne goes back to Nona's restaurant. She lets herself in with a key and looks around. She is being watched by a man smoking a cigarette. Phryne sees the butter dish is full. Phryne hears a noise and if grabbed by the man from behind. She fights him off and Guido comes to their aid but gets hit in the head. Phryne manages to slice the man in the upper arm with a knife and he runs away.
Phryne helps Guido with an ice pack for his head. Guido says it is a good thing she is good with a knife and she say if she was better the man would not have got away. Phryne asks Guido if he recognises the man and Guido says he was either a Strano or one of their friends. Phryne asks what he was doing their and Guido says he could ask her the same thing. Phryne says she was looking for something and Guido says she should have knocked and asks. Phryne says she is not sure he would have answered. Phryne asks about Nona Louisa's dish and where she got the recipe. Guido says she made the recipe from memory. Phryne tells him the Stranos think she stole it from the recipe book and she thinks this it true. Guido says Nona Louisa was a woman of many secrets but one he knows about. He shows Phryne pictures of Nona Louisa when she was young and her daughter, his wife. Phryne sees Nona Louisa's books and sees she withdrew $77 she asks Guido if he knows why. Guido says Nona Louisa was a woman of many secrets like all good women and flirts with Phryne. He invites her to dinner but she tells him she has already had two dinners. He says he can see she is still wearing dessert - dulce and kisses her milky skin on her wrist and then her neck The pair embrace passionately.
The next morning Phryne arrives at the Strano restaurant and finds Jack drinking coffee. Phryne says she didn't know Jack drinks coffee and Jack asks her if she would like a full confession. Phryne says she prefers a little mystery. Concetta calls Jack in and tells him her father is awake now. Jack introduces Phryne to Concetta but Concetta tells him they spoke the night before. Jack and Phryne greet Vincenzo and his father and the father offers them breakfast. They decline then Jack asks Vincenzo to roll up his sleeve. Vincenzo asks what for an Jack tells him about the break in at Nona Louisa's the night before. Vincenzo rolls up his sleeves and there are no knife wounds. His father does the same and again no wound. Vincenzo is angry at Jack for treating them this way after all the time he has spend with them. Jack and Phyrne leave.
Outside Jack asks Phryne about why she came back to the restaurant the night before. Phryne says she had some questions for Concetta. Jack asks if she got the answers she wanted and Phryne says it is too soon to say. She asks him what exactly Jack meant when he said he and Concetta were 'old friends' Jack is evasive and offers her a lift. Phryne says no she has an appointment at the docks. Jack tells her not to nose around and Phryne tells him not to worry as he will be the first to know what he finds. Jacks says he is worried about Phryne getting in to deep and Phryne says she will be careful and asks Jack to promise he will be careful too and the climbs into Cec and Burt's taxi.
At the police station Guido tells Jack that the Camorra force restaurants to buy the tomatoes at top price and if you don't buy you get hurt. Phryne asks if he sabotaged the shipment but he tells her it was not him it was Nona Louisa. He says Nona Louisa was not the sweet old lady they thought.
In the morgue Dr Mac tells Phryne and Jack that Nona Louisa was killed by Deathcap mushrooms and not strangulation as they thought. Jack asks about the marks on her throat and Mac says Nona was attacked but it didn't kill her. Phryne says there were mushrooms in the dish Nona was preparing but Mac tells her those mushrooms tested out as harmless. She says Nona Louisa was killed by mushrooms she ate earlier in the day as they do not kill you instantly. Phryne and Jack wonder if the poisoner and attacker were two different people or one doing a thorough job.
Phryne goes to question Mariana who tells them Nona collected the mushrooms herself as she was an expert at recognizing them so couldn't have made a mistake unless she didn't have her glasses on. Phryne asks if Guido got along with Nona and Mariana says not always as she blamed him for her mothers death. Phryne asks Mariana where she was again yesterday and Mariana says buying butter. Phryne tell her there is a full dish of old butter in the restaurant. Phryne says she noticed Mariana actions towards Vincenzo. Mariana says the families would rather kill them than see them happy together. Phryne asks where she really was and Mariana comes clean and says she was at the movies with Vincenzo. She gives Phryne her ticket stub and begs Phryne not to tell her family.
Phryne and Jack then go to see Vincenzo. He asks if Mariana told them and Jack ask Nona Louisa found out and that's why he went around there. Vincenzo says no they were at the pictures. Phryne tells Vincenzo he needs to tell them what he knows about Nona's death. Vincenzo says he knows nothing. Jack asks what he knows about the Camorra. Vincezo says the Camorra are a myth. Phryne asks about Roberto Salvatore and Vincenzo denies knowing him. Phryne says they know the Camorra are bringing in tomatoes. Vincenzo tells her she knows nothing. He says he was 17 when he started working on the docks and the Australians would not help him bu Fabrizzi took him under his wing and introduced him to Roberto. At this moment the father walks in and silences Vincenzo. He tells Jack to keep his nose out of it as that is how people get hurt. Jack asks if that is a threat. Papa leaves and Concetta tells them to ignore him as he still thinks he is the big man of the village. Phryne asks if he is Camorristi - high up in the Camorra. Concetta says this is why he married her to Fabrizzi. It was not for her it was for her father to set himself up in Melbourneas Fabrizza was a pig. Concetta says he has to learn that he cannot threaten people. Phryne asks who else he has threatened and Concetta tells them she heard him talking to Vincenzo last night telling him terrible things he would do to Mariana.
Dot is in the church helping prepare for Nona Louisa funeral. She asks the Priest if he believes a wife must obey her husband. The priest says it is not about belief it is how things are and Dot says perhaps times have changed. The priest tells Dot it is not her place to question and Dot tells him that she loves the church but the Protestant Church has a much more liberal view and in that case she will have to think seriously about her faith.
Hugh arrives and Dot asks what he is doing there. Hugh tells her Jack thought it would be a good idea as tensions are high. Dot says she doesn't know why people who hated Nona would go to the funeral. Hugh says perhaps to make sure shes dead. Dot asks if he thinks there will be trouble but Hugh says if there is he has it covered.
Outside the church both families are stood on separate sides. Roberto Salvatore walks between them. Jack and Phryne are watching on from a car. Salvatore walk up to Papa Stranos and kisses him and then kisses his hand. Phryne and Jack realise he is the Patrino - the boss.
Phryne and Jack enter the church as the funeral is already going ahead. They sit on separate sides. The funeral ends and the mourners pass the body showing their repects. Papa Strano passes and is crying. He places something in the coffin. Phryne has Dot cause a distraction by knocking over some prayer books and grabs the item from the coffin.
Later Phryne and Dot go to see Mariana and Phryne asks her how things are between her and Vincenzo as they noticed the slap. Mariana says it was nothing just a misunderstanding. Phryne asks if Vincenzo knows who killed Nona and that's what the fight was about. Mariana asks them to leave her alone as she buried her Nona that day.
Phryne then shows the locket to Guido and asks if the picture is Nona Louisa as a girl. Guido says it could well be. He asks if the other picture could be Papa Antonio Strano and Guido says he doesn't know. Phryne asks if they could once have been in love. Guido says Nona had no love. When her daughter died she didn't even cry. Phryne goes to leave but Guido tries to get her to stay. Phryne tells him she can't ravish him as she needs to find out what happened to Nona. Guido says something to Phryne and Phryne says perhaps but I'm sure it will wear off and Guido tells her whoever he is is a lucky man. Phryne scoffs and leaves.
Jack is at the restaurant with Concetta. He asks where Papa Antonio and Vincenzo are and Concetta says out that's why she asked Jack so they can be alone. Jack asks about Salvatore and Concetta tells him she is not interested in him but Papa wants to buy his loyalty so offers up Concetta. Jack tells her to be careful but Concetta says she does not care she only cares for Jack. Jack says with the family secrets and he being a policeman but Concetta says she will leave her family to be with him.
At Phryne's house Phryne is showing Jack the locket. Phryne says she wonders where the hate has sprung from and Nona Louisa and Papa Antonio did come from the same village. Jack says it makes sense as thwarted love could cause the resentment. Jack is taking an antacid and Phryne asks if he was burning the midnight oil as grappa can do that. Jack says he is sure he was up no later than her and Phryne tells him she was in bed at a very sensible hour. Jack asks if she is waiting for him to ask who with but Phryne interrupts him as she has noticed something odd in Nona's account book - she took out 6 pounds every Thursday. Jack said it could be wages but Phryne tells him there was none as only family worked. Jack says maybe shopping but Phryne tells him that came out of the restaurant accounts and this was her personal account. Jack asks Phryne what she said she was up to the night before and Phryne tells him she didn't say. Jack asks why she was asking him in that case and she tells him she was just making conversation.
Jack and Phryne show Papa Antonio the locket and he tells them he loved Louisa but her parents would not allow it. Louisa wanted to run away but he wouldn't so she stole the book thinking he would follow. Phryne ask where he was on Thursday afternoon and he says in the restaurant with a friend - Roberto Salvatore. Phryne says it is convenient they can confirm each others whereabouts so Papa asks Concetta who confirms his story. Papa says he was making arrangements for the wedding as Roberto will marry Concetta.
Back at the police station Phryne is comparing the movie tickets. Hugh tells Jack he checked the movie session times and the tickets were definitely Mariana and Vincenzo's. Phryne notices that is a big gap between ticket numbers and realises one of them - Vincenzo must have shown up a lot latter so he would have had enough time to go to Nona Louisa's first. Vincenzo enters the room with Hugh and Jack asks him when exactly he got to the cinema. He tells them he was late. Jack asks if Nona Louisa found out about him and Mariana. Jack says it wont be hard to prove he attacked Nona as he has no alibi so if his footprints match. Hugh puts paper down on a chair and Vincenzo lifts his foot onto it to be drawn around and Phryne notices a rosary bead lodged in the turn-up of his trouser leg.
Hugh counts the rosary beads and they discover one is missing. Hugh asks if he should write up the charges but Jack says not quite yet. Hugh leaves and Jack tells Phryne all he can charge Vincenzo with is assault as the cause of death was poisoning. Phryne is reading the coroners report she tells Jack it is all in there as it says the mushrooms should ordinarily take 6-7 hour to kill someone but as Nona Louisa had a compromised liver function it would be 3-4 hours. Jack realised she would have ate the mushrooms for breakfast. Phryne says there was egg and mushrooms in her stomach - frittata di funghi. Jack says Vincenzo would be hard to crack and if he knew who killed Nona even torture would not get it out of him. Phryne says love might.
Phryne and Jack are watching Vincenzo from a car. They see him carrying a suitcase. Jack asks Phryne is she is sure her plan will work. Phryne says of course she is not sure. They burst into the restaurant where Papa Antonio is talking to Roberto Salvatore. Jack asks where Vincenzo is. Papa says what no hello and asks where the respect is. They say the have not seen Vincenzo but Jack tells them they saw him come in.
Jack and Phryne head outside and see Vincenzo trying to leave with Mariana. Papa Antonio comes out and sees them together and tells Vincezo that Mariana will break his heart as her family break everything. Mariana tells him she doesn't care what happened back in the village, she loves Vincenzo. They handcuff Vincenzo and take him away.
At the police station they tell Mariana that Vincenzo will be charged with murder and most likely hang. Phryne reaches to comfort Mariana and tells her Vincenzo wasn't the man she thought he was. Mariana flinches away and Phryne asks her why. Mariana shows them her bruised shoulder. Jack asks if Vincenzo did it he he says no. Phryne asks if it was Nona. Mariana tells them she hit her with a rolling pin. Phryne says what prompted the beating. Mariana tells them it never took much, she didn't like the way the garlic was chopped. Phryne says it was more than that she found out about her and Vincenzo.
Jack and Phryne then question Vincenzo and ask if Mariana knew his plan. Vincezo said no. Phryne say Mariana found out he had attacked her Nona and didn't report him. Jack tells him this would make her an accomplice after the fact. Vincenzo said Mariana knew nothing. Vincenzo asks if they want to know why. He shows them the old recipe book and tells them Mariana found it under the floorboards where Nona had hidden it which is why he poisoned her. Phryne asked how and he tells them with the mushrooms, he broke in and force feed them to her.
Back in with Mariana Phryne tells her they know about her Nona's withdrawal of $77 to get her a ticket back to Italy. Mariana says her Nona was going to send her away and it would have been the end of her and Vincenzo. Phryne says she must have picked her moment.
Flashback of Mariana adding the deathcaps to Nona's omelette when her back is turned and then Nona eating it.
Back in with Vincenzo Phryne asks him how he found out Mariana poisoned her grandmother. Vincenzo said no he did it. Phyrne says he may have broke in and tried to get the book back and sabotage her dish but he did not kill Nona.
Flash back of Vincenzo attacking Nona
Phryne tells him it was the mushrooms that killed Nona and she'd eaten them hours earlier. Vincenzo begs with Jack and Phryne to take him and spare Mariana but Phryne tells him its too late.
Back in with Mariana she tells them that her Nona had said she would pay a gunman to kill Vincenzo and she had paid a gunman before. It was Nona who paid to have Fabrizzi shot. Jack asked who the gunman was and Mariana says She wouldn't say. Phryne asks about the weekly $6 withdrawal her grandmother made every Thursday and Mariana says a man came to the restaurant every Thursday and he had a scar down the side of his face.
At Stranos Jack and Concetta are talking. Concetta asks if Jack has thought about what she offered. Jack says he has thought of nothing else. Concetta says first there is something she has to make sure and kisses Jack. Concetta pulls away telling him his heart is taken. Jack tells her he cares for her. But Concetta tells him when he marries again it will be for love but Jack is taken.
At home Phryne is sitting alone and listening to Italian opera. Mr Butler comes in announcing Jack is there to see her and Jack enters holding a bottle of wine. Phryne asks him if he is not eating Italian tonight and Jack tells her Stranos is closed. Phryne tells him he will have to make do with her and Jack says they will have to make do with each other, offering the wine.