LA Confidential Magazine: Italian Inspiration

As part of my Food Issue spread in LA Confidential, I had to come up with a list of some of my favorite Italian restaurants around town. What a great assignment! I sat around thinking about the best homemade pastas, the great wine lists, the wonderful (or wonderfully eccentric) service, and all the fine Italian food I've gotten to eat while living out here. It definitely made me remember some great meals I've shared with family and friends--and made me resolve to get to the gym more often!

To see some of the places that I like...and to add your own suggestions if you want, check out my story at the general link I'm attaching, or read the text of the article below.


Italian Inspiration

Is there any meal as satisfying as a great Italian dinner? Mamma mia, no! The aloof vibe at Via Veneto (3009 Main St., Santa Monica; makes it seems like someone is going to make us an offer we can’t refuse—and it’s usually one of the irresistible ravioli dishes on daily special. Farther down Main Street, eating at intimate, canary-yellow Ado (796 Main St., Venice; feels like dining in someone’s home (someone who can cook better than your own nonna). Amici Brentwood’s (2538 San Vicente Blvd., Santa Monica; menu is full of palatable piatti, but regulars only order from the list of specials recited by the welcoming waiters. The white-tablecloth service at Valentino (3115 Pico Blvd., Santa Monica; is second to none, as is its list of Italian wines, and the sober service at Il Moro (11400 W. Olympic Blvd., Los Angeles; and Il Ristorante de Giorgio Baldi (114 W. Channel Road, Santa Monica Canyon; is professional and on point. However we’re partial to the familiar bustle at Angelini Osteria (7313 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles; and the more casual vibe (and flatbreads) at Terroni (7605 Beverly Blvd., Los Angeles;, as well as the homemade pastas, modern wine cellar and small-plate bar specials of Downtown’s new Drago Centro (525 S. Flower St., Los Angeles;