Cicchetti, a new wine bar and retail wine shop from veteran restaurateur Pierre Bader, will open Oct. 1 at Bank of America Corporate Center.
Although inspired by traditional Venetian wine bars called bacaros, Cicchetti has some service features — like $5 wine delivery, curbside wine pickup and a monthly wine club cranking out $10 bottles to members — that will definitely appeal to urban Americans.
Add to that a curated retail selection of 400+ bottles of unique and hard-to-find wines from around the world, a cocktail program crafted by celebrity bartender Bob Peters, custom house chocolates from Secret Chocolatier and an extensive menu stacked with everything from shareable small plates to a $120 48-ounce tomahawk steak for two, and I think we’ve got a pretty perfect storm for a wildly popular restaurant opening.
Here’s the deal.
Cicchetti’s menu consists of authentic Italian “two-bite” dishes comparable to Spanish-style tapas.
This includes a selection of polpette (meatballs), build-your-own bruschetta, tinned seafood and chips, and more than 20 seafood, meat and vegetable small plates.
Bader, who owns Sonoma Restaurant Group (SRG), the parent company of Aria Tuscan Grill, partnered up with SRG operations manager and wine director Briana Cohen to create an experience inspired by their travels. SRG executive chef Alex Piatt will oversee the menu creation executed by chef de cuisine Kelsey Norgaard.
“The food is an addition to the wine rather than vice versa” says Bader. He points out that servers are well versed in wine, more like sommeliers than wait staff, and will help guide guests to ideal pairings for their selections.
- Polpette / Meatballs ($10) – Choose from: manzo (beef, potato, red wine honey agradolce), pollo (chicken, ricotta, tomato rosemary pomodoro), baccala (salted cod, lemon aioli, grilled lemon), granchio (fresh crab, peppadew pepper aioli), stagionato (prosciutto, mortadella, salsa verde, parmigiano), agnello (lamb, pine nut, golden raisin onion jam).
- Bruschetta Bar ($4) – Served deconstructed for tableside assembly in your choice of: pisello (fresh pea, shallot, robiolina), pollo (pulled rotisserie chicken, salsa verde aioli), pomodoro (olive oil cured tomatoes, basil pesto), baccala (salted cod, lemon aioli), lily confit (shallots, garlic, olive oil), peperoncino (roasted red pepper, pecorino), cariofo (artichoke salad, fresh mint, asiago, lemon), ricotta (ricotta, olive oil).
- Lattine e Patatine / Tin & Chips ($12) – Your choice of tinned wild cockles, wild mussels, wild octopus or wild sardines with olive oil, sea salt and chips for dipping.
- Bocconcini / Small Bites (seafood $12, meat $8, vegetables $7) – There are more than 20 dishes here but highlights include the polpo (sautéed baby octopus, creamy polenta squid ink with white wine pan sauce), gnocchi fritti (rosemary sea salt fried bread, prosciutto, aged balsamic) and polenta fries (with pecorino and black truffle aioli).
Cicchetti also has four full-size entrees for sharing. Although the menu says they’re designed for two people, Bader says you’ll need a bigger crowd than that to finish them. Those dishes include:
- Bistecca ($120) – 48-ounce beef tomahawk steak with chimichurri rossi
- Pollo ($30) – rotisserie whole chicken with salsa verde
- Agnello ($95) – 30-ounce rack of lamb with feta, pomegranate and mint
- Pesce ($40) – whole roasted fish with caper berry onion relish
Wine is available by the glass (6 ounce), ombra (3-ounce tasting pour) or bottle with a $10 corkage fee for retail bottles consumed on site. Don’t want to get out of your sweatsuit to drink? Me neither. But that’s fine because they’ll also deliver bottles to you for a flat $5.
Wine shop and delivery: Cicchetti’s on-site retail shop sells wine by the bottle or case. Bottles are priced $15 to $200 with a $10 corkage fee for on-site consumption. Same-day curbside pickup or delivery is available Monday through Saturday with two hours’ notice. Delivery has a flat $5 service fee and requires a one-bottle minimum in Uptown and one-case minimum outside that area.
Wine club: One of Cicchetti’s more unique offerings is The Venetian, a monthly wine club that includes 12 bottles of wine for $120, a very enticing $10 per bottle. The monthly selections are curated around a timely season, holiday or theme, and they’ll host pickup parties on the third Wednesday of each month for distribution.
Wine CSA: Apart from the wine club, Cicchetti will also debut a monthly wine CSA, a play on community-supported agriculture. Rather than a box of produce, Cicchetti’s CSA features high-quality wines (two to six selections) with limited or exclusive availability in the market. The monthly CSA will be available for purchase for $75 and includes a pickup party with a meet and greet with the farmer on the first Wednesday of the month.
For drinks other than wine, celebrity bartender Bob Peters has created a menu of lower ABV spritzes, bellini and signature draft cocktails.
They’re priced in the $7 to $12 range. The house cocktail, The Cicchetti ($12), is a draft cocktail made with Malfy gin con Limone, house-made limoncello, aperol, Massican sweet vermouth and prosecco.
Here is the full Cicchetti menu:
Cicchetti is located at 100 N. Tryon Street in Bank of America Corporate Center.
Hours are Monday through Saturday, opening at 2 p.m. for retail and beverage sales along with limited food service, with the full menu available beginning at 4 p.m. and closing at 10:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday and midnight Friday and Saturday.
Cicchetti offers free valet after 6 p.m. and validated parking at the Bank of America Corporate Center parking deck.