Foreground: Anxious dude waiting for his date
With great pleasure, I dined last night at Sotto, near Beverly Hills. An iconic and perfect margherita, hitting all the right notes, and the pork meatballs made with pecorino and mint, on a bed of bitter greens, roasted lemon leaf, and ricotta.
Jeremy Parzen, aka Do Bianchi, wrote the wine list for Sotto, whose owner is a study abroad pal from Italy. The list is tidy and dominated by Southern Italian wines, and there are a few boutique Cali wines, like Donkey and Goat's "Sluicebox". I had the Magliocco from Terre di Balbia, the Calabrese project of Venica & Venica...it's a rare variety, earthy and high medium to full bodied, stainless steel vinification. I then had a chance to taste the Cerasuolo from Gulfi...I'd say it slots in between the lightness and rusticity of Arianna Occhipinti and the more interesting and powerful version by my favorite Italian producer, COS. As Dottore Parzen said quite aptly, it is a "pretty" wine. Lots of pure cherry fruit, clean, uncomplicated and balanced.
Every now and then, Jeremy flies out to CA from his ATX home base to pour at Sotto. If you are in LA and he's in town, make it a point to dine at Sotto. And if you're not reading Do Bianchi (www.dobianchi.com), then you should...it is more than a wine blog.
Buona bevuta a tutti!
Team Culatello (a team of one)