Cuisine Scene: Italian
According to a local Italian American association, San Pedro is home to Los Angeles’ largest concentration of Italians, which may help explain the proliferation of authentic Italian eateries in neighboring Long Beach. With handmade pasta, woodfired pizza, regional specialties, and traditional desserts, these restaurants provide a taste of the Old World right here in the LBC.
L’Opera Ristorante (101 Pine Ave) and La Traviata (301 Cedar Ave) in Downtown Long Beach are classic Italian restaurants with traditional menus, classy bars, and private banquet rooms for family gatherings or corporate events. On the Promenade, Michael's Downtown (210 E 3rd St) offers Neapolitan-style pizzas from a woodfired oven, as well as salads, pasta, grain bowls, and hearty entrees. Go as early as 8 a.m. for an Italian breakfast skillet on their shaded outdoor patio.
BELMONT SHORE & NAPLES
Michael’s on Naples (5620 E 2nd St) serves dinner daily, a Sunday brunch, and a prix-fixe farmer’s market dinner on Wednesdays with wine pairings selected by general manager, sommelier and native Italian, Massimo Arrone. Further west on Second Street, Domenico’s (5339 E 2nd St) has been a fixture since 1954, and is Long Beach’s oldest restaurant. Try their ground pepperoni pizza, an original menu item.
Locals love La Parolaccia Osteria (2945 E Broadway), owned and operated by a family who relocated to Long Beach from Rome. The menu offers Roman dishes like pasta carbonara and woodfired pizzas in a comfortable atmosphere reminiscent of a neighborhood eatery in Italy. Even with a recently expanded dining room, Parolaccia’s wait times can get long, even on weeknights, so call ahead for a reservation.