I was wondering if anyone has tried the new Italian restaurant in El Segundo. DeLuca's Trattoria is the new "child" of Johannes of Chef Hannes. We tried it a few nights ago and were disappointed. The waiter continued to tell us "it's a work in progress" and we know all new restaurants have to work out the kinks. Here was our experience:
It was a Tuesday evening, the restaurant was about 1/3 full, so there was no rush. We ordered:
Cream of Pumpkin Soup: very bland and tasted more like sweetened milk.
Chopped Salad: "cosi-cosi" - has dried cranberries that seemed to overpower everything else.
Spaghetti and meatballs (my real test of a new Italian restaurant): Sauce tasted more like a tomato soup that a rich pomodoro sauce and the meatballs had the rubbery taste of frozen meatballs.
Spaghetti picante (pasta with oil, red pepper, calamari, garlic) This was better than the other dish.
Bread: This was really a surprise...it looked lovely in the basket but when you bit into it, it was as soft and "crust-less" as a piece of sliced Wonder Bread. We asked about it and were told that the dough is purchased and then baked in their ovens. They really need a nice crusty, textured italian pane to go with their garlic infused olive oil.
Overall...the entire meal seemed bland and "watered down," more like an Italian wannabe. We had high hopes...but we think this work-in-progress needs some progression.