Hip and classy, Little Italy came out with a bang. Dishcrawl San Diego featuring Little Italy quite certainly knows how to wine and dine. With a unique start to crawling Little Italy we began tasting at 98 Bottles. Jill, the owner was so gracious and generous in letting us explore her wine bar. 98 Bottles definitely has a good thing going, with an event focused around art and music nightly, a wine list to fulfill everyone’s pallets and a tapas style menu to die for, we left wanting more. We started off with an the Epic Cheese Platter with four artisian cheeses, hard salami, Dijon mustard, truffle honey, home-made caramel with naan and cracker bread, multiple flat breads from dough made in house and a great wine and beer selection. Thanks Jill, you left an impression and we cannot wait to return and hit the easel with a glass of wine in hand.
As we happily walked down the strip of Little Italy, our second stop featured Café Zucchero, a Busalacchi family restaurant. This place is to die for, family owned, true Italian cuisine and a cannoli to make your mouth water. Lexi, the event coordinator for all the Busalacchi Brothers, gave us a hint of cuisine inspiration with a little bit of history. A feast was prepared with love for us that included a Pasta Puttanesca with capers, olives and anchovies that is absolutely delicious, a traditional Arancini – Fried Italian Rice Balls- YUM! Of course to finish, the famous Sicilian dessert, a cannoli with fresh ricotta filling made fresh daily . Café Zucchero is a Little Italy must and do not skimp on the cannoli!
You cannot be in little Italy and not have pizza, better yet Isola Pizza Bar. Tucked away on the south end of India street is a lovely modern style pizza bar. If you have not had a chance to try them, this is an absolute must. Not only was the service incredible but the food was out of this world. Alonso, the general manager gave a great introduction and Isola’s passion behind fresh food and simple ingredients. With everything made in house and local and organic we stuffed our faces with Charred Octopus with fingerling potatoes, prosciutto di parma sun dried tomatoes and a variety of fresh cheeses, Margherita Pizza with basil that pops, Arugula con l’uovo Pizza with arugula, and truffle oil, Salamino Piccante Pizza with spicy salame, tomato and parmigiano. The food kept coming and Isola’s definitely proved their passion and love for food. One of the best restaurants featured on Dishcrawl Little Italy, a crowd pleaser, I can guarantee we all will be back. Thank you Alonso and company we happily rolled out of the restaurant full of smiles.
As a true foodie there is always room for more, last stop, Prep Kitchen. Just the décor alone will lure you in. The staff is friendly and another awesome restaurant using local and organic ingredients. Prep Kitchen changes their menu often making sure what they serve is fresh and in season. Brent, the manager and Chef Shane Midnight delivered the dishes and shared the preparation that goes into each dish. We finished with the most amazing tapas style Patatas Bravas, fried potatoes in a spicy tomato sauce and Muscles cooked to perfection with a delicious sherry sauce. Not your typical Italian dishes but this is what makes Little Italy the place to be. It really has something to offer for anyone. We were sat in the private party dining area and we all gathered around one large table and ended the night full but happy.
Each guest ranted and raved the whole night through and expectations were exceeded on this incredible social foodie experience. Little Italy left an ever lasting impression for not only the local neighbors but now the new locals are hooked. If you are in the neighborhood, take the time to walk, eat and enjoy the culture that Little Italy has to offer.
Can't wait to crawl with you all again! Make sure to join us for our next Dishcrawl on August 6th in South Park!
Until we eat again,