The amazing Alessandro Pirozzi has opened a new trattoria in Laguna Beach, Alessa, in the old Pomodoro space. You may have had the pleasure of dining in his Cucina Alessa in Newport or Huntington, but Laguna's version is unique. Although there are many old favorites, there are new and exciting additions as well; for instance, a proscuitto and mozzarella bar and specialty house-made fresh pastas. Gourmets will appreciate the crudo and the fragole while traditionalists will revel in Mama's meatballs and fettucine Bolognese.
The interior has been refreshed and somewhat Italianized with marble floors, a display of Pirozzi's family photographs and a large ceramic wall fountain on the patio. Pirozzi built the new wine rack above the bar himself. The transformation took place in five days, another testimony to his savvy and energy.
This restaurant has already generated a lot of buzz in Laguna Beach. Although they don't take reservations, you can call to place your name on the waiting list and they will tell you how long the wait is, so you can arrive accordingly. The staff, Italian or not, have all been thoroughly coached by Pirozzi in Italian charm. Every lady is addressed as "bella" and every gentleman "bello," and somehow it's quite seductive — like the food.