Has it really been 19 years? Whew. Well, it's been almost that long since I last ate at this defining Melrose trattoria and I have to say because of that long hiatus it was a revelation of sorts. We had a spinach gnocchi and a puttenesca with clams last night that have few equal in my experience. A roasted chicken and a caesar salad immediately brought to mind Zuni Cafe in S.F. Add one lovely fresh apricot tart, a latte and two glasses of Chianti and our bill was $62! Evan Kleinman was in the kitchen and the staff treated us like an extension of her family: comfortable, knowledgeable, attentive.
I feel kind of stupid, like I've been the one in a cave about this place. And I used to love the W.L.A. and Marina stores. It's great to see that the bloodlines of A.O.C. date back to even earlier sensibilities of quality product and modern design. And I've got to wonder. Is it just a coincidence that the two leading Italian trattorias in L.A. right now are called Angelini and Angeli?