I originally went for a tasting at Nonna’s of Italy back in December of 2011. Oscar was kind enough and invited me back to see what‘s new at Nonna’s. I tried a lot of new things and was completely happy.
This time I got to meet and talk to Lillian Kacky, the owner of Zacky Farms, with her late husband Bob Zacky. She got married in 1956 and was with Robert Zacky for 60 years. We shared some very similar stories in our life growing up here in Los Angeles. She married into the chicken business, while I was born with it in my blood. My grandparents in England, Rachel and Israel had a very successful chicken farm. Robert owned a market in Monterey Park before entering his family’s business. Everything at Nonna’s is a family affair; even their grandson Leo has pasta named after him.
My wonderful host Oscar makes you feel like you’re in someone’s home. He is so kind and he caters to your every wish. He met Lillian’s son Scott when he was working at Spago’s on Canon. Scott loved the way he took care of his customers so much so that when Scott decided to try his new venture, he asked Oscar to be at the helm and the success story known as Nonna’a of Italy was born. It has been open for six years, and the Zacky family only owns this restaurant.
Here’s what I tried:
Sauvignon Blanc – Tangent Edna Valley 2012. This is a very light and effervescent wine, it paired great with the Cozze e Vongole.
Chardonnay – William Hill Central Coast 2012. This is a great buttery wine, my favorite characteristic when it comes to wine. I would drink this one with Spaghetti Aragosta.
“The Whip” – White wine Livermore Valley 2013 *Interesting American Wine. It was described as being sweet since it has so many different wines blended into one. I would drink this lovely wine with the Sseafood risotto.
Pinot Noir – Melville Santa Rita Hills 2012. You can drink this wine pretty much with anything, but I especially like it with the Carpaccio e Rucola, and the distinct parmesan adds another element.
Claret – Francis Coppola Black Label 2011. The perfect wine with the Bistecca New York al Forno in all it’s very rich glory.
Merlot – Provenance Napa 2011. A terrific pairing with the Spaghetti ala Bolognese. The rich meaty sauce brings out all the finest degrees of fruit.
Super Tuscan – Poggio al Tempio 2008. This wine is a fine match with this dish, Vitello al Vino Rosso, and its wine sauce.
Corn Puree Soup, beautifully blended with rich sweet corn flavor.
Calamari Fritti with Crispy Calamari, saffron aioli, marinara. This calamari has a wonderful flavor and is so fresh and light.
Cozze e Vongole with Spanish black mussels, manila clams, spicy tomato broth, garlic, parsley, extra virgin olive oil. The sauce is more like a soup and the fragrances that come out of this nice cast iron pot are filled with garlic and tomatoes.
Carpaccio e Rucola, Raw beef filet, thinly sliced with shaved parmesan, baby arugula, and extra virgin olive oil. Very simple but delectable, with the great fresh parmesan on top.
Preferita della Nonna, Wild baby arugula, radicchio, candied pecans, shaved parmesan, and balsamic vinaigrette. The pecans add a hint of caramel and sweetness that make this salad great.
Funghi e Salsiccia, Tomato, mozzarella, champignon mushrooms, and Italian sausage. This pizza has a perfect thin crust, with Nonna’s authentic pizza oven. It is just the best pizza in Los Angeles.
Spaghetti ala Bolognese, Spaghetti with a meat and tomato sauce. They substituted my spaghetti for fettuccine. This sauce is rich with meaty goodness.
Leo’s Pasta, Linguini pasta in a white wine tomato sauce, with roasted red and yellow peppers, white mushrooms, onions, and chicken breast. The peppers really add a zip to this substantial pasta dish.
Spaghetti Aragosta, Spaghetti, half Maine lobster, arrabiata or pomodoro sauce. How could you go wrong? Half of a lobster. Wow, what an accomplishment.
Risotto Funghi, Arborio rice, porcini mushroom, Parmesan. There is something so fantastic about porcini mushrooms; they just add the best woodsy flavor to this Arborio rice.
Risotto Di Mare, Arborio rice, mussels, clams, calamari, shrimp, and saffron sauce. There is lots of garlic flavor mixed in with truly the best saffron around.
Pollo Parmigiana, Chicken breast, pounded, breaded, Mozarella, Parmesan, and tomato sauce. The chicken is very tasty. It’s cooked with sauce and cheese and pounded flat for utmost tenderness.
Vitello al Vino Rosso, Roasted Veal Chop, garlic and herbs, with Nebbiolo sauce. I have never had a veal chop like this. I would say it is my go to dish from now on!
Bistecca New York al Forno, 14oz Prime New York steak from the wood oven. Good grilled steak with enjoyable flavors.
Apple Tarte Tatin vanilla gelato with warm caramel sauce. The caramel sauce is the gift that just keeps on giving. It’s so rich and moth watering.
Nonna’s of Italy is a natural wonder here on Sunset Blvd. Fantastic food with a fun home style vibe. It just is the best Italian restaurant in this area, and like I said during my first review in 2011, a true sleeper. Wake up and smell the pizza and run to Nonna’s of Italy!
My re-visit was a very positive experience. I got to taste their new menu and dishes that were completely new to me. The thing that sets Nonna of Italy apart from all the hundreds of Italian restaurants in the area is the way the staff makes you feel like you’re part of their extended family. They greet you so graciously when you arrive and kiss you on the check when you leave.
Next time you have a large family dinner and you have run out of ideas as to where to have it, I would go try Nonna’s of Italy. You will be guaranteed a delicious no non-sense experience. Regional Italian food made with the finest ingredients and lots of love. That’s a recipe for satisfaction every time.
Nonna of Italy
9255 W Sunset Blvd,
West Hollywood, CA 90069