Ah, the joys of opening a much-anticipated new place under the constant scrutiny of food media folk. After a few misfires due to plumbing issues, Jason Stratton's new bar Artusi opened quietly Wednesday night. The airy Italian aperitivo bar adjacent to the newly expanded Spinasse is a departure from Spinasse's lace curtains and rustic vibe. Stratton's own paintings adorn the walls, and Artusi's signature cocktail comes with a tiny garnish in the shape of the bar's three-hexagon logo. The place already has the attention of Food & Wine, who named Stratton one of its Best New Chefs in 2010.
The small-plate menu, inspired by Italian culinary trends both old and new, is prepped in the bar's "satellite kitchen." Jess Voelker also has the goods on what you should be drinking.