Upscale restaurants abound when you head down to San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter, but Italian fine dining might be hard to come by. That is unless you’re destination is BiCE Ristorante. This upscale and sophisticated Italian restaurant on Island Avenue exudes the feeling of being in modern Europe with flavorful dishes created by Executive Chef Mario Cassineri with heart and soul. The Milan native has held the reigns of the kitchen since 2009 and helped Bice to receive quite a few awards including the California Restaurant Association’s Gold Medal for the “Best Fine Dining Italian” in San Diego. When you receive an award from your peers as well as your patrons, you’re doing something really well.
Clean lines and classy table settings let elegance surround you while indulging in contemporary Italian cuisine using local and seasonal ingredients. From house-made pastas to vibrant, fresh seafood, Bice Ristorante answers the call to prepare all with care. Chef Cassineri has classics like Prosciutto d’Anatra e foie gras (Duck Prosciutto and Foie Gras), Pappardelle al Telefono con Pomodoro, Mozzarella e Basilico (Homemade Pappardelle with mozzarella cheese, fresh basil in a tomato sauce) and Risotto agli Asparagi e Capesante (Risotto with Asparagus and Mano De Leon Scallops) to allow you to taste a little of Italy here in sunny Southern California.
If the superb selection of food from the “Boot” isn’t good enough for you, BiCE’s selection from the wine cellar is. Over 17 pages worth of wines by the bottle to choose from should give you plenty of options if you’re gravitating toward grapes. A stellar amount of wines by the glass, of both the red and white variety, will give you the option of pairing your food with drink to intensify your meal. In addition to wine and food, meat and cheese are available at Bice. It has its own cheese and meat bar where you can try a vast variety of formaggi e salumi from Italy.
Most restaurants have a happy hour, yet they offer bland specials with cheap food to get people in to make some extra money. So when a restaurant actually offers a great selection of drinks and an appetizing variety of food, that’s when it becomes a real happy hour. BiCE has its thoughtful happy hour from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. and its offerings are amazing. In addition on Sunday nights, Happy Hour is available all night till 10. There are 14 different choices of grub from Mini Grilled Cheeses with provolone and Parma ham to Wagyu Beef Carpaccio and fresh Ahi Tuna Tartar along with Cheese Bar items such as, the Beast "Bruschetta" and Blue Cheese "Cotton Candy". And if you’re looking to imbibe along with ingest, Bice has $5 well drinks, Peroni on tap, its house wine selection and the delicious Cocktail of the month.
All of the reasons above should be enough you to experience the fusion of elegance, charm, and Italian fare BiCE Ristorante has to offer. From food, to wine, to meat, to cheese, the flavors of Italy can be found right here at home.
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