Restaurant Opens in the Former Pinocchio Space
Didn’t make it to the Golden Globes in 2017, 2018 and 2019? Forget the awards. You missed some great food.
For example, in 2018, guests dined on a burrata salad appetizer and a main course that featured pan-seared Chilean sea bass with red beet parmesan risotto, Castelvetrano olive tapenade, broccolini florets, golden stripe baby beets, yellow squash and zucchini.
One of the major chefs for the event was Pacific Palisades’ own Gianba Vinzoni, who has now opened a restaurant, Cinque Terre West Osteria, with his wife Marlo in the 970 Monument building.
Cinque Terre’s first official day was on Monday. The inside tables at this cozy restaurant were full during the dinner hour and several tables outside on the patio were occupied, in spite of the unseasonably cool temperature.
On Tuesday, there was a steady flow of people who had ordered take out. Others stopped by to look at the menu.
The Vinzonis, who have lived with their two children in Pacific Palisades for 15 years, have worked to bring reasonable prices to quality food—and have succeeded.
Breakfast starts at 7:30 a.m. with items such pizza a Colazione ($15) with bacon, egg, mozzarella, chives and pepper; Eggs Royale (smoked sea trout, crème fraiche and Hollandaise) on focaccia; Eggs Florentine (spinach, crispy kale and Hollandaise) on grilled avocado; and Eggs Benedict (Porchetta, pear and Hollandaise) on rye bread. Prices are $13 to $15.
Or try The Bowl (two poached eggs, farro, spinach, avocado, basil and pickled onion) for $16.
For someone who doesn’t want a full breakfast, there is a choice of plain and chocolate croissants to go with coffee, lattes and espressos.
Lunch and dinner feature a wide variety of choices. The salads include Burrata (heirloom tomatoes, basil, pistachios, balsamic and smoked salt, $14), Cavolo (Tuscan, savoy and baby kale, radishes, bread crumbs, ricotta salata and lemon, $12) and Octopus (roasted radishes, Romesco and potatoes, $14).
Pasta ($13 to $17) includes Agnolotti de Brasato, Pappardelle alla Bolognese, Chitarre al fruitti di mare, Trofie al pesto, Tagliatelle al pomodoro e basilicao and Risotto del giorno.
Main courses feature chicken, short ribs, swordfish, N.Y. steak and Buridda (traditional Ligurian fish stew, crostini).
There are six pizzas to choose from. As we watched one little girl happily munched on a Burrata e fichi.
There several side dishes, such as broccolini (with bread crumbs and garlic), grilled escarole (battuto di acciughe and colatura) and truffled potatoes. The roasted carrots (crème fraiche and smoked paprika) were served at the 2019 Golden Globes—so they were a must to try and were wonderful.
EATER Los Angeles reported on May 6 that “Pacific Palisades has a new Italian dinner option called Cinque Terre West. The casual spot opened over the weekend at 970 Monument Street in the former Pinocchio in Cucina, offering a menu from chef Gianba Vinzoni (Fig & Olive) that includes handmade pastas and a variety of Ligurian dishes, including breakfast.”
In an interview in Foodiamo, Vinzoni was asked to identify the biggest challenges when preparing a meal for 1,500 guests at the Golden Globes.
“I guess the ordering and delivering process,” he said. “You need to be very precise in communicating and submitting orders in order to have everything you need in the house. Otherwise, it is difficult to get things done.” (Visit: foodiamo.com/italian-food-news/7-questions-gianbattista-vinzoni/).
The restaurant is open from 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily. The owners are friendly and warm: the food is great: prices are reasonable. A beer and wine license has been applied for, but until it is received, guests are welcome to bring their own wine. The restaurant will be open on Mother’s Day, with the menu still being decided. Call: (310) 454-0709 or email email@example.com.
This place is exceptional! The pesto was prepared to perfection and the pasta truly al dente. My friend’s pizza was really crisp on the bottom and moist on the top – that’s a feat I’ve only seen really accomplished in New York and Italy. And the salads – we were rolling our eyes to the heavens – each one had just the right amount of dressing on super fresh greens, vegetables, and cheese. This man knows what he is doing! Both Gianba and his wife Marlo are so gracious and personable, and Igor provided everything we needed with speed, energy and a great smile.
Last week, I was coming up from parking my car and paused to look at our newest Italian restaurant. As I was paused admiring this beautiful new business ……… I was greeted by a lovely young lady who asked if I would like a croissant. I think it was the very best croissant I have ever eaten ! I can’t wait to experience more !
I have relished the authentic cuisine and friendly service twice and will continue to do so, introducing others to the delicious fare of this unique haven in the Palisades!