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Much-Anticipated Italian Spot Announces Six-Seat ‘Secret’ Restaurant

Il Dandy unveils Arama

Red mullet with turmeric, nduja, and orange
Ristorante Abbruzzino

One of the year-to-date’s biggest openings is currently scheduled to land on Friday, May 10 at the corner of Fifth and Laurel in Bankers Hill, when the owners of Little Italy standout Civico 1845 unveil Il Dandy, a modern Italian restaurant and bar created in partnership with acclaimed father-and-son chef duo Antonio and Luca Abbruzzino, who founded the Michelin-starred Ristorante Abbruzzino in Calabria, Italy. In advance of the chefs’ U.S. debut, the team is revealing a newly-added element within Il Dandy that will give diners a true taste of their award-winning restaurant in Southern Italy.

What was originally designated as a chef’s table, housed in a cozy room just off the 2,350-square-foot, glass-walled kitchen, has now evolved into an intimate restaurant-within-the-restaurant that will have its own menu and reservation system. Called Arama, an amalgam to two Italian words that translates to “The Copper”, to honor the metal’s history as an early cookware material, it is designed as a tiny replica of Ristorante Abbuzino, down to the furniture and fixtures.

Yellowtail with radicchio and red fruit
Ristorante Abbruzino

Comprised of just six seats, with two seatings per night, reservations for Arama will be highly coveted. Co-owner Dario Gallo tells Eater that it will serve a 12-course, prix fixe menu that will allow the chefs to cook dishes that are more in line with those served at Ristorante Abbuzino, except with even more unfettered imagination and fewer boundaries. Though it will undoubtedly be rooted their native Calabrian cuisine, Arama will enable the chefs to bring in flavors from regions throughout Italy and beyond, incorporating ingredients from the cultures all over the globe.

Arama at Il Dandy

2550 Fifth Ave STE 120, San Diego, CA 92103

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