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La Botte is named after a wine barrel, paneled with former wine casks, and is as thick with actual wine bottles as your niece’s room may be with Bratz paraphernalia. The wine list is a serious one, the kind where you feel a little like a kid whose ball has been taken away if you lack the bank balance to play around with $156 bottles of Serpico or verticals of Amarone. Antonio Mure’s cooking — hearty, wintery north Italian stuff like stuffed pheasant, taglioline with crumbles of quail sausage, fried sweetbreads with polenta, or spaghetti tossed with lentils — seems almost engineered to bring the best out of a young Brunello or a bottle of San Leonardo, a Friuli red with the muscular presence of Sassicaia. Coda alla vaccinara, the famous Roman oxtail dish, is superb, large, pillowy hunks of tail nestling into soft, yellow puddles of polenta, gooey on gooey and rich on rich — exactly what you want with a glass of Barolo if somebody else is paying. Is Mure’s cooking, which you also may have tasted at Piccolo in Venice or Wilson in Culver City, a bit severe for the sybaritic climate of Santa Monica? Perhaps. But it also may be just what we need.
Dear Mr. Gold:One of my favorite dishes is braised oxtail. Given how delicious oxtail is, it’s a wonder that I rarely see it on any menus. It seems to be an unsung meat in this country, which is a real shame. It probably suffers from bad PR given... More »
NEVER IN THE HISTORY OF FINE DINING, HAVE SO MANY DINERS BEEN DECEIVED BY THIS MONEY HUNGRY RESTAURANT....five of us went for dinner, three of us ordered a LAMB SHANK DINNER FOR 20.00 EACH...what we got was a small bowl of pasta with 2 OUNCES OF SHREDDED MEAT.....we complained to the waiter, he just laughed....WE GOT NO LAMB AND NO SHANK.....ordered a chocolate dessert, got a 2 inch round cake with sauce for 10 dollars each...two ordered a veggie pasta..totally insipid, tasteless at an exhorbitant price. We were still hungry after spending 250.00, had to go to McDonalds to get a burger. The owners are laughing all the way to the bank, and we got screwed, COMPLAINED TO THE OWNERS, NO RESPONSE. STAY AWAY FROM THIS PLACE.
I thought I knew every great Italian restaurant in the city. And then I discovered La Botte on LikeMe. Don't let its location at the bottom of an apartment building fool you. La Botte offers scrumptious, progressive Italian served in an ambient setting (think wine cellar interior and handsome wait staff with thick Italian accents). They have an amazing wine selection and are knowledgeable for recommendations. You should try the stuffed squid appetizer and either the filet ravioli or the beet ravioli. If you are up for being really decadent (and maybe sharing with your dining companion), get the pasta with squab sausage and parmesan "fondue." The cheese is melted at the bottom so you stir the pasta around to mix it all in, and it is rich and creamy and delicious!
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