HOLLYWOOD(Spiritsman)1/23/14/–A new Italian restaurant does not really create a major buzz because there are always a never endless supply ready to take on the challenge, and especially on the West side of Los Angeles. However in the case of Il Piccolo Verde in trendy Brentwood, new owners have taken over the spot formerly occupied by San Gennaro, and the overall package is impressive. It has everything the locals seem to go for-extensive menu of traditional and signature dishes, large portions, excellent service, relaxed atmosphere, open kitchen and two owners who really seem to care.
Partner and manager is Oscar Morel who spent the past 25 years running Spumoni in Santa Monica, and the focus here is gluten free grains, organic and fresh vegetables and organic unrefined cold pressed oils.
Lets focus on some of the dishes you can expect at Il Piccolo Verde and that I tried and enjoyed. Burrata is an appetizer that you cannot go wrong with, and this version at $13 is no exception garnished with olive oil and oregano.
The free range organic chicken which is baked and then grilled is probably their signature dish, and you should also try the New York Steak with mushroom sauce.
Also outstanding here was the Cioppino ($21), a mixture of clams, mussels, calamari, Shrimp, fresh fish and crostini, but I decided to combine it with the angel hair pasta for probably the best dish of the night bar the free range chicken.
Pizza lovers have a choice of New York style to choose from priced between $17.95 through $21.95, or they can select from ten Pizza Napoletana 12 inch versions that are cooked for just one minute in temperatures of 800 to 1000 degrees Fahrenheit.
The oven at Il Piccolo was handmade by the Marra family out of Naples using sand and ash from Mt.Vesuvio.
The wine list is fairly extensive and the corkage fee if preferred is $15. I just tried the Zardetto Prosecco from Venice at $13 a glass, but there is a large selection of Italian and California wines to choose from, with an encouraging amount of seventeen to choose from by the glass if you don’t want to splurge on a bottle which tend to be on the high price. The most inexpensive are a few at $35 like the Barbera d’Alba from the excellent Batasiolo portfolio or the California Merlot from Benziger in Sonoma. If you want to show off, then go for the outstanding Pinot Noir Blanc de Noir sparkling wine from the excellent Schramsberg Winery in Napa ($83).
There are all kinds of special deals and promotions listed on the paper menu that are designed to bring in business especially the repeat kind. Although it doesn’t really hurt in the short term for a new restaurant, this place is decent enough to dispense with this hit and miss approach once it becomes established.
Il Piccolo Verde-140 S.Barrington Place, Los Angeles, CA 90049
Open 7 days 11 am to 10 pm.
287 S.Robertson Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90211