We eagerly awaited the grand opening, and now are thrilled to have BiCE Ristorante as a part of the downtown San Diego dining scene.
Housed in a sleek and modern setting on the corner of Island and 4th Avenue in the Gaslamp Quarter, BiCE is an automatic must-visit venue for local diners seeking authentic Italian flavor and excellent service.
Dark wood paneling, high ceilings, sweeping white curtains and a soft, understated color scheme sets the tone for sophisticated Italian cuisine served on white table cloths accented by delicate foliage and candlelight. The charming Managing Partner, Rinaldo Colantoni, makes his way around to all parties, recommending dishes and sharing the story of BiCE’s unique history, as servers climb ladders in the see-through wine cellar room.
Beatrice Ruggeri, lovingly called “BiCE” by her friends and family, was known for her extraordinary hospitality, warmth and luscious cooking. She opened a small trattoria in Milan in 1926 and, years later, BiCE’s United States debut was in New York City in 1987. Upholding BiCE’s reputation for quality, BiCE San Diego looks to become a part of the neighborhood, attracting a real family of local customers that can feel recognized and catered to.
From the rich history of each cheese variety I tried, to menu recommendations and personal thoughts on the growth of the dining scene in San Diego, Rinaldo's strong presence would make Beatrice proud. The combination of timeless setting, timely service and memorable, affordable food will make BiCE Gaslamp’s new hot spot.
The generously sized menu changes weekly, uses local, seasonal ingredients, and offers a contemporary blend of traditional dishes and new trends to show enhancements in Italian cooking.
Notable starters include the Trio di Tartare featuring fresh ahi tuna and avocado, salmon with chives, and sea bass flavored with citrus, as well as selections from the Cheese Bar, including Burrato con Peperoni Arrosto in Bagna cuda – 4 oz. Burrata with roasted sweet Chino’s Farm peppers and a light touch of Bagna Cuda.
BiCE is known for its homemade pastas such as the veal ravioli in porcini sauce, potato gnocchi and the Pappardelle Al Telefono, or wide ribbon pasta with cheese, basil and tomato sauce. Main courses include whole Mediterranean sea bass roasted with garlic and rosemary on a bed of potatoes and breaded veal Milanese chops pounded thin, and Grilled and Sliced Wagyu Beef Tenderloin Strips with asparagus, fried sweet potatoes and crispy onions.
For the richest of rich palates, the Rinaldo-recommended Orzotto all’Aragosta e Burratina is a risotto-style Barley with Maine Lobster, fresh tomato and Burrata cheese. This is one ultra-creamy dish that you won’t soon forget.
BiCE offers a sophisticated list of quality Californian and Italian wines, such as the Chianti Classico Riserva Nozzole, ’06, and has a full bar featuring endangered cocktails, including the Hendricks Julep Martini with Hendricks, muddle mint and cucumber, simply syrup, lime juice and a splash of soda.
Prices for appetizers range from $9 to $12, pastas are between $10 and $16 and entrees have an average range of $16 to $28. A prix fixe chef’s dinner will also be featured at $40 per person including wine pairing. Enjoy a surprisingly low-priced $5 happy hour from 5-6pm daily.
Insider Tip: Planning a dinner party? BiCE features “The Milano Room,” an ultra-sophisticated private dining room which can accommodate up to 40 people for private parties and is equipped with audio and video equipment for presentations.
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