June 16, 2014

Scopa Italian Roots

At 2905 West Washington Boulevard, in Venice, California, there is dark, brick building that boasts high ceilings and white tiles in the inside, but is indistinguishable from the outside.  There is no sign, so don't bother looking.

But what is worth looking is the vibrant interior, full of patrons and buzzing energy.  Scopa's been named one of LA's hottest restaurants and has made some Must-Eat lists. If you haven't had the chance to visit, you're probably wondering if Scopa's really worth all of its hype. Here I am to tell you that it is in some ways, but not completely.

First, doesn't this bar look impressive from an aesthetic standpoint? Rest assured, it's impressive in taste too. Scopa is known to make some of the meanest, baddest (and by baddest, I mean best) cocktails in the city.  This must be true because I was too distracted to even take a photo. Of course each refreshing treat is comes with a high sticker price ($10+).

All of the dishes are served to be shared.  In other words, order several things to be decently full but fully satisfied.  Sometimes -- many times -- a little goes a long way and quality trumps quantity.

Burrata topped with beets, tangerine, tarragon, and vanilla -- $11

Mussels with 'nudja (spicy Italian sausage), fennel, garlic, white wine, and seeded Italian bread -- $16

Steak Tartar with capers, lemon, chives, and lardo toast -- $18

Pappardelle with pork shank, stracciatella, arugula -- $16 

Cavatelli with Italian sausage, broccoli rabe, locatelli (Pecorino Romano cheese) -- $16

Zabaglione topped with toasted hazelnuts and mixed berries -- $7

The two main downsides of Scopa is that it's not the most affordable place at which to dine, especially for a casual weekday dinner and the noise level can be pretty high at peak hours.  And if you live on the Eastside, having to go West of the 405 is another con.  Lastly, it cannot compare to Italian restaurants in Venice (Italy), but for Venice, LA, it's a solid recommendation.  Check it out, and let me know if you disagree.

Scopa on Urbanspoon

cuisine: Italian
location: Venice, CA
hours: Daily Dinner: 5pm-2am, Sat/Sun Brunch: 11am-2:30pm
websites: { Scopa | yelp | facebook | twitter }
price: $$$ (Small plates, big prices)
parking: Valet; Street
attire: Casual chic
notes: Make reservations. Can be noisy due to high ceilings. Portions are small.
other reviews: { Mr.Porter | LA Weekly }


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