Bettolino Kitchen Hits the Mark on Italian Cuisine in Redondo Beach

Located in the Hollywood Riviera, Bettolino Kitchen has been hitting the mark on great Italian food and top notch service since they opened a couple years ago.

Looking into Bettolino Kitchen in Redondo Beach's Hollywood Riviera neighborhood.

Looking into Bettolino Kitchen in Redondo Beach’s Hollywood Riviera neighborhood.

From previous visits and reviews, my expectations for exquisite Italian cuisine were high.  But this visit wasn’t just about trying their handmade pasta or their signature meatballs (I did try those though).  Instead, I was lured in by the promise of a unique cocktail.

Getting to Brooklyn Via Manhattan

The beverage that drew me in for this visit was the Brooklyn via Manhattan, an interesting spin on two drinks served in the same glass.

Brooklyn via Manhattan is what happens when you don't mind your drink getting watered down by melting ice.

Brooklyn via Manhattan is what happens when you don’t mind your drink getting watered down by melting ice.

The drink starts off as a Manhattan: a stiff blend of High West rye, bitters, and sweet vermouth.  A secret ingredient — an ice cube infused with Luxardo liqueur — slowly transitions the drink to a Brooklyn.

With the ingredients of both drinks being just about the same, the transition is a neat way to get from one drink to the other.  And I’ve never been a fan of a watered down drink so I found this to be a clever way to make the ice work in favor of the overall experience.

Appetizers and Entrees

But sadly, we can’t live on liquor alone.  Fortunately, Michelin starred Chef Fabio Ugoletti and the Bettolino Kitchen staff were all set to serve their modern take on classic Italian food.

As previously mentioned, the meatballs were a great way to start the meal.  They’re 100% beef, hand-rolled balls that are pan fried and then sauteed for 30 minutes in a sauce before being topped with basil oil.  We’re talking layers and layers of flavor in a tiny package.  The accompanying crostini make for the perfect utensils to scoop up the sauce.

Traditional meat balls and crostini.

Traditional meat balls and crostini.

In the entree category, this visit had me sampling the filet mignon and the grilled salmon.  With Bettolino’s menu being seasonal, the filet mignon may not always be an option on the menu.  Their expert seasoning and fork-tender results warrant a call ahead to see if this cut is on the menu before you swing by to try it.

The filet mignon.

The filet mignon.

The salmon was equally well handled and had  a nice saltiness to the finish.  The bed of cauliflower and potato mash was an interesting spin on the side dishes as well.

Grilled salmon on a bed of cauliflower and potato mash.

Grilled salmon on a bed of cauliflower and potato mash.

Closing on a Sweet Note

Bettolino’s dessert menu has plenty to choose from to wrap up a savory meal.  Again, consider the options to be seasonal but a few favorites are likely to be consistent on the menu including the ricotta and almond cheesecake.  The almond flavor takes a wonderful lead with citrus notes keeping close behind.  Indeed a sweet, minty orange is served along with the cake adding a nice change in texture to the cake and crust not to mention a pretty swank presentation.

Ricotta & almond cheesecake.

Ricotta & almond cheesecake.

Coffees, ports, and even a housemade limoncello are available to wash down dessert.  Another aperitif option would be one of the Signature Soft Drinks from the main menu.  Made with sparkling water and flavored syrups, these sippers are great as a refreshment during or after the meal, especially for the mocktail crowd.

The grapefruit and ginger signature soft drink.

The grapefruit and ginger signature soft drink.

While still newish to the South Bay dining scene, Bettolino Kitchen is settling in as a fan favorite for creative Italian food and beverage.  They’re even adding weekly classes for guests to learn how to make gnocchi along with Chef Ugoletti.  Attendees learn how to make a gnocchi dish from scratch and enjoy their creation with a glass of wine.

The dining room motto: "We don't come to the table to eat. We come to eat together."

The dining room motto: “We don’t come to the table to eat. We come to eat together.”

For more information on menu items, classes, and more, call ahead or check out the Bettolino Kitchen website.  They’re open from 11 AM until 9 PM seven days a week with Friday and Saturday nights going until 10 PM.

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About the Author

Michael loves grilling, rum, and has a weakness for key lime pie.

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