New in Pasadena: Trattoria Neapolis Italian restaurant and bar
Trattoria Neapolis Italian restaurant and bar has opened in the middle of one of Pasadena's popular shopping districts on South Lake Avenue. Sandwiched between an Anthropologie clothing store and an Aaron Brothers, first-time restaurateur Perry Vidalakis' new spot is bringing the style and flare of an Italian piazza to the suburb.
Chef Bryant Wigger (Four Seasons Los Angeles) is turning out a mixed menu of traditional Italian and California market-driven cuisine featuring items such as the bistecca, a Wagyu flatiron steak with porcini BBQ sauce, roasted garlic gnocchi and smoked pork shoulder, and Wigger's take on tiramisu, made with house ladyfingers, mascarpone crema, roasted summer peaches and caramel. The kitchen houses a 7,000-pound Neapolitan wood-burning oven, used for making Neapolitan-style pizzas.
The bar program boasts a curated list of cocktails by mixologist Vincenzo Marianella (Copa d'Oro) and a beer list by sommelier Christina Perozzi. The wine list is a mix of 50 bottles of wine from California and Italy, with nothing priced more than $50.
The restaurant space, designed by Hatch Design Group, is divided into two levels and various dining spaces. At the entrance is a light-filled garden room. The main dining room on the first floor consists of the bar and roomy booths, and at the back of the dining room are smaller tables, near the kitchen. On the second floor there is a balcony area that overlooks the first floor and a private wine room.
The restaurant is now serving dinner nightly from 5 p.m. but has a few plans in store for the coming months including a late-night menu at the bar until 2 a.m., lunch service beginning at 11 a.m., a to-go counter and a bottega.
-- Jenn Harris
Photos, from top: View of the restaurant and bar from the balcony; the roasted garlic gnocchi. Credit: Frank Noack