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8.3
DEN

Spuntino

PHOTOS: TASHA FITTS

The more things change, the more they stay the same. Never was a phrase more relevant to a restaurant as that one is to Spuntino. We've gotten very familiar with this place, and have come to rely on two things about it: we always know we're going to be surprised with something new, and not surprised when we love it. Does that mean Spuntino is predictable? Absolutely. But in the best way possible. The restaurant is so consistently good, we always walk in expecting great things. And so far, those expectations have been met every single time.

Their menu changes with the season, but it's generally full of handmade, simple noodle dishes - we've had meaty bolognese plates that fill us up after three bites, and we've also had light, broth-based specials that taste so good we order two. Add in their small but strong wine list, and Spuntino is the perfect choice for special occasions. Especially date night, or if you’re looking to celebrate something with a small group.

The corner space located in the Lower Highlands is exactly the kind of quaint spot everyone wants in their neighborhood. It's an especially great early-evening move, as after dinner you can head down the street a few blocks to the more happening section of LoHi to grab some drinks or just walk off all the carbs you just stuffed down your gullet.

One other unexpected thing we've come to expect: Spuntino is somehow usually pretty easy to get into. We're always baffled by this, as you'd assume a place this good would be consistently packed. But we're selfishly happy it's remained largely a secret. Here's hoping that's just one more part of Spuntino that stays the same.

Food Rundown

Focaccia e Ricotta

We're in favor of holding off on the heavy apps and leaving room for more pasta, but this one is hard to pass up. Freshly-made rosemary bread pairs pretty perfectly with the creamy ricotta. Live a little and get it.

TASHA FITTS
Elk Tartar

This might be a little intimidating at first glance, but the Elk loses any gamey flavor it came with thanks to the ginger garlic and lemon aioli.

Bigoli

Fresh, homemade pasta, lots of mushroom, and some pine nut crunch. You'll want to eat this whole thing yourself, but stay strong and order this to share so you can go big on the rest of the menu.

TASHA FITTS
Risotto

Butternut squash, prosciutto brown butter, Thai basil, and creamy pecorino cheese. Rich as all get out, but so good, especially on a cold night.

TASHA FITTS
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