Caveat emptor, I'm pretty much in love with La Buca and Parkside was my fave "fancy" resto. So I was pretty excited when we headed off to Altro Buca for a special family meal (thought better of Il Giardino). We sat outside on the lovely patio on one of Vancouver's best "eat out and revel in the weather evenings." We did the a la famiglia thing and let them serve us as they pleased. It was really good. I had read previous dubious reviews, so I was paying attention to detail, but it was tricky because really on a warm summer evening there was nowhere I would rather be than that quiet corner of the very hot and busy Westend. We had many courses including two really outstanding pasta creations and some fabulous salmon for a main. Interestingly though, what really stood out were the vegetables, they were as good as Parkside's, no surprise really given that its all the same staff (I think) but nice to see that carry through to antipasto as well as contorni (did my lack of Italian mangle that?) and topping to a please-may-I-eat-this-every-day-of-my-life-ravioli.
La Buca (MacDonald) is closer to our house and will remain in the "as regular as we can afford" rotation, but for perfect outdoor dining, L'Altro is on the list. Shucks, guess we'll have to try it on a winter's eve just to get a sense of the indoor vibe.