Restaurants, Italian
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Photograph: Courtesy Acquerello

This 26-year-old restaurant strikes an amazing balancing act: it is one of the most refined dining rooms in the city, with Old World European-style service that is a special and rare thing to experience, yet with an elevated Italian cuisine that is contemporary and innovative. Chef-partner Suzette Gresham is a master of pasta (the ridged pasta with foie gras is a decadent wonder), and her seasonal tasting menu is full of unexpected touches, like a Fontina budino with roasted red pepper and bitter chocolate. Partner and GM Giancarlo Paterlini runs the dining room like a smooth ship, and his lovingly assembled wine cellar is full of treasures. This is the kind of place that is ideal for special occasions, but it’s such a memorable experience that any lover of Italian cuisine shouldn’t let the lack of something to celebrate keep them away—a meal here is an occasion in and of itself.

By: Marcia Gagliardi


Venue name: Acquerello
Address: 1722 Sacramento St.
San Francisco
Opening hours: Tue-Thu 5:30-9:30pm; Fri, Sat 5:30-10pm
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