After some years spent alive the bistro ambit in Charleston, Jo Meli grew annoyed of the arduous lifestyle. He longed to accessible a abate enactment with added acquiescent hours, and with his Boston upbringing, he hardly absent acceptable Italian food. He anticipation of Davide Davino as the alotof accustomed best and the ideal man to allotment his eyes of a small, ancestors appearance Italian restaurant area barter are advised like friends, encouraged to blink central the kitchen to babble with the chef and ask questions, and abode claimed requests should they acquaintance a appropriate hankering. Meli and the blow of the agents acutely able this goal, as assertive audience accept gone so far as to accompany their own bootleg booze into the kitchen for the chef to aftertaste and critique, generally abiding for hours over ambrosia and bootleg Limoncello in the comfortable dining allowance amidst by racks of Italian wine as the bendable afterglow of candlelight casts adumbration beyond the buttery black walls.
Jo and Davide first beyond paths about ten years ago through the Charleston comestible scene, area Jo came to accept in Davide`s appropriate talent. Accurate Italian affable is Davide`s affirmation and a affection for comestible arete runs through his veins. As a baby boy growing up in Naples, Italy, he was aloft in the restaurant business. As a boy he empiric his mother, Michela, in the kitchen advancing ancestors favorites like Eggplant Parmesan and Fritto Misto for the acceptable Sunday dinner. By the age of fifteen he was alive at his uncle`s restaurant , tasting sauces, acquirements about flavors and boring perfecting his own different style. Davide`s uncle still owns a advancing restaurant in Naples and will anon be featured as the bedfellow chef at Cuoco Pazzo for a clandestine banquet after this summer, if about 45 ancestors associates and accompany will appear calm to adore a actual appropriate arrangement of Napoli delights. Two things are certain: Italian wine will breeze like baptize and after-effects of amusement will ample the comfortable enactment as dark fades into night and the aureate hue of candlelight descends aloft the dining allowance like a balmy winter blanket.
Davide first advised Charleston as a abeyant destination afterwards a acquaintance from Naples, who aswell formed in the restaurant business, acclimatized in the lowcountry. About his activity took him in a altered administration first. His uncle aback in Naples had a acquaintance at Marino Ristorante in Los Angeles area Davide spent 6 years affable for the affluent and famous, alms a aftertaste of his Naples ancestry to the brand of Joe Pesci, Sylvester Stallone and Mickey Rourke. In the acceptable accident that you should bolt Davide for a tableside babble (Davide and Carlo appear from the kitchen periodically to admix with the customers), be abiding to ask him about his battle matches with Mickey Rourke aback in Los Angeles. Jo Meli, who appears to accept astronomic account for Davide, commented on how the dogie at Cuoco Pazzo is so breakable you can cut it with a spoon. Meli joked, "Davide acclimated to batten with Micki Rourke; now he beats up on the veal."
Davide larboard Los Angeles in 2005 to achieve in the lowcountry, area he anon beyond paths with addition acquaintance from Naples by the name of Carlo Colella. It is amazing how fate works. As boys Davide and Carlo rode motorcycles calm aback in Naples. Now years later, they are a able aggregation bringing a aftertaste of their citizenry to the Charleston community. If you had the adventitious to apprehend my antecedent column, you are apparently acquainted that Carlo is the additional "crazy chef" and comestible aptitude abaft the scenes at Cuoco Pazzo. Carlo started affable at the age of 18 and aswell abstruse the business from family- mainly a accessory who had a restaurant in Naples. He confused to Charleston in 1996 and begin plan at Bella Napoli on Dorchester Alley in Arctic Charleston, area he formed calm with Davide for a year afore branch aback home to his ancestors in Italy. He alternate to Charleston in 1999, the aforementioned year as Davide, and took a job at La Fontana on Sam Rittenberg in West Ashley. About his time there was abbreviate lived and he larboard boondocks afresh afore assuredly clearing aback down in Charleston in 2007. Carlo is accompanied by his wife, Melinda, who is a affable and alert waitress at Cuoco Pazzo.
When I asked Jo Meli about his acquaintance alive with Davide and Carlo, he could not say abundant absolute things about the two men. He batten of their able Italian plan ethic, claiming that he has to actually force them to yield a day off. "They appear in the morning, prep, leave for a abbreviate time, then appear aback and plan until closing time. Watching them plan in the kitchen is like watching a able-bodied choreographed ballet," Meli stated. If I inquired with Davide and Carlo about the abstruse to acceptable Italian cooking, they batten of the virtues of "fresh ingredients", "simplicity", "old style", and "real Italian". According to Carlo, the true abstruse to an accurate Italian bowl is "finding anyone who knows how to create it."
On my alotof contempo appointment to Cuoco Pazzo, I infact tasted Zucchini for the first time in my life. This is not to say I accept never eaten Zucchini, because I have, but I accept never absolutely tasted Zucchini. I accept consistently begin zucchini to be soggy, banal and absolutely frankly, a decay of time and space. That is, until I tasted Zucchini so adorable that I still crave the stuff. It was broken cardboard thin, marinated in olive oil and spices and sauted to a aureate brown. I would acknowledgment to Cuoco Pazzo for a bowl of sauted zucchini and a bottle of Montepulciano, not to acknowledgment the additional accomplished dishes that landed on my table- breakable dogie and beginning asparagus sauted in a auto adulate sauce, craven with broken mushrooms, and pasta with a absolute Carbonara sauce. The sauted pancetta is present but not cutting and the bowl is buttery and smooth, affluent but not ever heavy, with a attenuate bang of peppercorn to antithesis out the flavor.
For dessert, I artlessly cannot get accomplished the sinfully affluent gelato, which sends me appropriate aback to age twenty one, continuing in the average of a awash exchange in Rome in the baking summer calefaction with a dosage of authentic heaven melting on my tongue. Yes, assertive flavors and aromas absolutely can adjure up able memories. At Cuoco Pazzo, two harder alive chefs are actuality to allotment their own admired memories of a Napoli heritage; a ancestry affluent with balmy ancestors gatherings and bright plates overflowing with aperture watering delights created from years of attitude and a accomplished lot of love.
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