Fodor's Northern California 2014
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The busy sister restaurant to neighboring Perbacco, this spot is all about affordable smaller plates that are big on flavor. Financial District workers crowd in for lunch or happy hour at the communal tables and long counter, while diners from all over town make their reservations for the evening. The room has a chic Milanese look to it, but the food is soulful and rustic. Start with the ascolane (stuffed olives; in this instance with short rib filling) and suppli (risotto croquettes with truffled mozzarella), and move on to plates of the excellent house-made charcuterie, a variety of bruschette, hearty pastas, delicious "angry mussels," and larger plates like Sicilian meatballs. There are plenty of Italian wines to explore by the glass and a well-informed staff to explain them (better to hear descriptions first-hand versus off the iPad wine list handed to each table).
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