Andrea Volpi, the Milan-born chef who impressed the Valley with his Italian cuisine at La Locanda in the '90s, and later succeeded Claudio Urciuoli at Taggia, will be heading up the kitchen at Local Bistro, a new European eatery set to open in early November.
Restaurant owner German Osio, who was a partner in three restaurants in Texas, where he met Volpi, says Volpi's menu will showcase classic dishes from Italy, France, and Spain in an "energetic, social, upbeat" atmosphere. He's currently in the process of renovating the former Eddie Chan's space at Thompson Peak and Hayden in North Scottsdale.
Look for starters like fried calamari with smoked pimenton aioli; grilled crostini topped with burricotta, tomato, basil oil, roasted peppers, and sea salt; and something called "drunk bread" that sounds delicious (crusty bread soaked in white wine, with melted gruyere). Fifteen pastas include a "ravioli of the moment," seafood linguini with lobster brandy cream sauce, and shrimp fideua (a Spanish dish similar to paella that uses vermicelli instead of rice). There will also be wood-fired Neapolitan pizzas, and entrees such as bouillabaise, New York steak au poivre, Berkshire pork chop with pineapple port reduction, and salmon en papillote.
On the weekend brunch menu, I'm eyeing scramble eggs with prosciutto cotto and Fontina.
Osio says he wants to keep prices accessible; pizzas and pastas will run $10 to $14, and entress that top out around $26.
There will also be a "farm to bar" menu, with cocktails that show off fresh, seasonal ingredients, as well as 60 to 75 wines between $25 and $35 a bottle.
Local bistro will be open for lunch, dinner, and weekend brunch at 20581 N. Hayden Blvd. in Scottsdale.
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