Opened in mid-2007, this hip-and-modern, foodie-friendly osteria (simple Italian-bistro-style restaurant) on a rapidly gentrifying central East Austin block is a magnet for young techies and creative types. Co-owner Mark Spedale is a native Sicilian, though the menu hews more toward northern Italian. Salads, pizzas, and entrées are all fresh and inventive in their simplicity. The pastas and gnocchi are reliable favorites, and bread and pastries are made in-house.
Lunch is ordered at the counter, at dinner there's table service, and half-price appetizers are available during happy hour (4–7 weekdays). Try the bistecca alla griglia, savory grilled marinated sirloin steak with potato, arugula, garlic, caramelized onion, and melted Gorgonzola butter. A good selection of Italian, American, and French wines is available by the glass or bottle, and pastries made in-house. On our last visit, the only imperfect note was slightly burned espresso.