Had dinner for 4 at Scarpetta in Beverly Hills last Saturday. Was excited to be there given the reviews I've read about a variety of the Scarpetta locations. At the end of the meal, all four of us had a similar reaction:
* Highlights: House cocktail, the San Remo, was delicious. Combined Maker's Mark, Compari and Elderflower in a refreshing and unique mix. For appetizers, the house Market Salad was surprisingly good. The textures were complex and beyond the norm of restaurant salads. Impressive. For the entrees, the veal chop was amazing. Thick, but grilled to a pinkish medium rare as requested. Moist, flavorful -- a keeper.
* Lowerlights: The pastas. The basil and tomato spaghetti, though famous, was underwhelming. We all shared it and wondered a bit about the great press it has received. The temperature was modest. It lacked the intensity and punch we had expected. Very normal stuff. The other pastas were similarly just ok. We were excited to taste the daily pasta special (finished with white truffles) but were disappointed when the embarrassed server returned from the kitchen saying that it was "sold out." Sold out at 7:30pm? The wine was fine and service was friendly and casual.
Overall, the atmosphere was pleasant, albeit a bit noisy. The hard surfaces throughout magnified the noise making for the evening. Not a place for a romantic date for two. Better suited for larger groups willing to share.
Fun evening? Yes. A must place for a return visit? No.
San Remo Restaurant
13729 Victory Blvd, Van Nuys, CA 91401
5490 W Centinela Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90045
Scarpetta Beverly Hills
225 North Canon Drive, Beverly Hills, CA 90210
225 N Canon Dr, Beverly Hills, CA 90210