Cocktail of the Day: The Loredana

We’re big fans of Osteria La Buca on the east side of Melrose near Wilton, here in Los Angeles. Beautiful, real Italian food, handmade pastas, gorgeous ragús, pizzas that’ll never make you want to touch an American fast food joint pizza again. They’ve expanded recently, tripling in size, so maybe we can get a table now some time after 6, which is when we usually go.

Vincenzo Marianella, head barman at The Doheny Copa d’Oro, concocted a superb aperitivo for La Buca, which was published in the Los Angeles Times Magazine last weekend. “[A] well-orchestrated delight in a glass,” they call it, just in time for the beginning of strawberry season. It’s named after the restaurant’s chef (who’s also known as “Mamma”). The sweet, deep red spring fruit is offset with a touch of Campari. “Muddling releases the flavor of the strawberry,” says Vincenzo. “It’s like the moment when you take the first bite of the fruit.”

The Loredana
(Created by Vincenzo Marianella for Osteria La Buca)

1 ripe strawberry, hulled and sliced.
1 dash simple syrup.
5 ounces chilled Prosecco.
1/2 ounce Campari.

In a mixing glass, muddle the strawberry with the simple syrup. Add the Prosecco but don’t stir — you don’t want to beat up the bubbles. Carefully pour the drink into a Champagne flute, add the Campari and serve immediately.

We need to go back there soon. I’m feeling the need for some proper tagliatelle alla Bolognese.