A look at Enoteca Sociale’s birthday makeover and menu update
Name: Enoteca Sociale
Contact: 1288 Dundas St. W., 416-534-1200, sociale.ca, @enotecasociale
Neighbourhood: Little Portugal
Owner: Pizzeria Libretto Group
Chef: Kyle Rindinella (Libretto, Local Kitchen)
Accessibility: One step at entrance; washrooms in basement
Enoteca Sociale celebrated its 10th birthday with a makeover: the room was nipped and tucked, and the menu got an update. Before you clutch your pearls, fear not, the beloved amatriciana and cacio e pepe pasta plates are still there. The revamped offerings focus on dishes from Italy’s Lazio region, an area that borders the Tyrrhenian Sea and includes Rome, and include things like ricotta cavatelli and pasta alla zozzona, a porky and pecorino-y Roman rigatoni dish. The Chef’s Selection is also new: the four-course, $55 prix fixe will change daily, but always finishes with either a whole-roasted branzino or a pork chop.
Wine is the drink of choice here, though Enoteca Sociale also has a great selection of small-production local beers, as well as almost two dozen different amari, which find their way into some creative Italian-inspired cocktails. The 120-bottle wine card is about 90 per cent Italian, 10 per cent Ontarian. The list works its way from the northern cuff of the boot all the way south to the toe. There are, of course, the familiar Italian grapes on offer (Nebbiolo, Sangiovese, Montepulciano), but the all-consignment offerings also include a few esoteric labels, like Le Ragnaie’s Miscelone, a Tuscan bottle of co-fermented red and white grapes.
FutureStudio oversaw the two-month renovation, which gave the 55-seat room a Roman refresh. The fluted walnut walls were inspired by Corinthian columns, while the spangled Edison bulbs have been replaced by vintage stained-glass lamps. The other big change is the added banquet seating which wraps around the now-curvaceous walls. “There’s really no bad seat in the house,” says Rindinella. The charcuterie room, however, was left untouched and is still available to host private dinners.