I say ‘Prima’!!
Do you have restaurants in town that whenever you go, you know you will have a great time? And you always so looking forward to go? Something about their ambience, food, people, energy, it makes you forget your hard day at work? I do – Trattoria Vittoria! Sometimes, I drink green juice all day long trying to maximize my dinner experience.
They don’t do much advertising so if you already found this place, you are lucky. I feel lucky to find this little gem on Victoria and am proud to be their ‘regular’.
Flipping through food, travel magazines, you’ve seen some of SB restaurants’ names over and over again. Trattoria Vittoria on the other hand, not bothered by a glam of big advertising, has been consistently local’s favorite with some good authentic northern italian food without big PR. If you are walking down on Victoria street passing all these big name restaurants and see this cozy, charming entrance to Trattoria Vittoria, don’t hesitate. Stop and go in.
Owned by Sofia Gallina and her husband, Giovanni Comin, this charming italian eatery has been serving santa barbara for 7 years. You will see Sofia at the corner of the bar where she eats her lunch almost everyday overlooking, with such a proud, at her son, Johnny Morosin, who manages the restaurant for her. Agh family affair….I intentionally sit down next to Sofia and starts my chatting. Sofia used to own a small italian deli on state street and when this space was available, her husband, Giovanni and she decided to open the italian restaurant. They scouted out this young talents straight from Trieste, Italy – Chef, Stephano Cepax and Sous Chef Roberto Prelazzi. ‘The talented kids’ as Sofia says, although they are not kids anymore…have been with her ever since she hired them 10 years ago.
‘I’ve never worked at anywhere that has more perfect ensemble than this. My mom and Giovanni owns the place, I manage business side of it, two talented chefs runs the show in the kitchen, and our well-loved wait staffs takes care of our customers, and Ivo Pee, the mixologist, is in charge of the bar. I don’t have ‘manage’ anything. We try to make our employees shine. When you take care of their employees, they take care of you’ Johnny said, as he was making sure his mom’s lunch was perfect. I’d be happy working here.
Chef stephane Cepax and Sous Chef, Robert Prelazzi, both classically trained in Italy, they serve up some great italian affair.
‘Simpler, the better’ is Chef Stephane’s simple answer. I can’t agree with him more. If a chef can whip up this delicious food by only using simple ingredients and technique, that is a sign of a great chef.
Spaghetti al Ragu-homemade tomato meat sauce is by far my favorite. I love simple good old Spaghetti with meatsauce. I claim to make damn good meat sauce but no, this one, it’s the best I’ve ever had. Something special between this humble noodle and sauce…it must be chef’s magic. Homemade Tagliatelle con Funghi Misti -thin ribbon pasta with mixed wild mushrooms and light cream sauce is my second runner-up.
I usually get Spaghetti with meat sauce then have(force) my friend to order Tagliatelle con Funghi Misti so I can steal a few or more bites of it. Oh my ordering strategy. It’s creamy, mushroomy, soothing, comforting, flavorful, satisfying…please make my fork stop on my way to dig one more bite onto your plate.
Spaghetti allo Scoglio-spaghetti with sauteed clams, mussels, calamari, shrimp, salmon in a tomato sauce, Tortellini Con Panna e Prosciutto-homemade veal tortellini in a cream sauce with sliced ham and delightful Arugula salad with baby artichokes and grilled shrimps in a light lemon. Too many good stuffs. Don’t forget their Bruschetta. One time, I got 2 orders of them. I was hungry and they were amazing, ok?
You’d better slow down because some amazing desserts are waiting for you. I vote for Triple dark and white chocolate mousse cake created by sous chef Roberto Prelazzi. It’s simply ‘Dreamy’. So get it while the supply lasts.
When you sit at the bar, ask for Ivo, the mixologist to make you a special drink for you. Everyone loves him and you will too. Now sit back and unwind your busy day.
Forget about waiting in line to get in some of the most advertized restaurants, just stroll down to Trattoria Victoria. I say ‘Prima!’