Run by Paul Grunberg, Mark Perrier and Craig Stanghetta, the Italian coffee shop, deli, and grocery is right next door to Pepino’s, at 635 Commercial Drive.
With its black-and-white checkerboard floor, woodland wallpaper accent, soft green colour scheme, and marble counters, the place has an old-world feel, especially with fresh pasta being made by hand right in front of you.
The café has a breakfast and lunch menu alongside pastries like frangipane and apricot tortino ($4.25), jam crostatina ($2.75), and vanilla cream bambolini ($2.25).
Breakfast items include pane alla Nutella ($2.75), frittata spaghetti carbonara ($13), and panettone “French” toast with syrup and crema ($14).
Savio Volpe regulars will be thrilled to see the “Savio” kale salad on the menu ($12). Other lunch offerings include Porchetta panino with salsa verde, crackling and Pepe Nero potato crisps ($10); tuna-belly conserva with cannellini beans, celery hearts, and parsley ($11); sardines in oil with pepperoncini ($9); and prosciutto-and-mortadella-stuffed gnooco fritto with pistachios and wild-flower honey ($13).
Retail products run the gamut from olives and olive oils to tomato sauce and dried noodles. Fresh pasta, which changes daily, is available for purchase; there will be seasonal stuffed pasta and hard-to-find shapes like trofie, tajarin, and orecchiette.
Produce such as peppers, avocados, and citrus fruit are also for sale, as are bulk Italian candies and lentils, farro, and other products from GRAIN, Canada’s only fully traceable dry-goods company.
Coffee lovers have a new brew to check out: a strong and smooth custom roast by JJ Bean.
There are plans for evening events centred around Italian wines and cicchetti.
The spot is open daily from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. More info is at Caffe La Tana. See below for more photos.