DTLA LIFE MAG #32 | SPRING 2017 - Page 28

District under the same roof as Shinola and NYC inker Scott Campbell’s Saved Tattoo, di Alba’s comfortable setting is designed to be a mainstay for locals. Helmed by chef/partner Nina Clemente, most recently at The Plaza at The Standard, High Line in New York, the casual counter and takeaway spot offers a variety of Roman-style focaccia with seasonal accompani- ments inspired by those Nina grew up eating during childhood visits to Italy. Rustic, spelt and gluten-free fo- caccia includes the Amalfi dressed with San Marzano tomato sauce, Fior di latte mozzarella, and basil; the Bi- anca with fontina, taleggio, and trumpet + oyster mush- rooms; and the Breakfast focaccia with smoked salmon and accouterments. The focused menu is rounded out with vibrant fare fit for everyday dining. Market-driven salads include the Italian tuna salad and Bitter greens with arugula, radicchio and sunflower seeds. Grains + greens such as romanesco with parsley salsa verde and Beluga lentils with cherry tomatoes are further reflective of Nina’s Southern Italian heritage. Pastries + desserts from sous chef Zena Scharf such as rye brownies with smoked salt, gluten-free toffee choc- olate chip cookies, and vegan citrus bundt cake are crafted to be similarly accessible and soulful. Beverage offerings include housemade Chinotto and rosemary lemonade, as well as local artisanal sodas and Stump- town coffee. The design of the space was conceptualized by The Smile team in collaboration with NY-based firm Gachot Studios. Living olive + mandarin trees, rosemary plants, vintage extra virgin olive oil cans, and Fiestaware evoke the inviting feel of a coastal Italian villa. Wood but- tressed ceilings and terrazzo tiles juxtaposed with rustic brown subway tiles are similarly transportive, yet fitting for the restaurant’s eclectic Art District locale. Guests from the neighborhood can gather for focaccia and coffee at one of the tables circling the stocked case + counter, or order provisions to-go. THE SMILE’S DI ALBA 827 E 3rd St Los Angeles, CA 90013 (2 13) 620 6244 www.eatdialba.com Photos Courtesy of Emily Hart Roth