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Don’t walk into Luca d’Italia expecting an Italian version of Mizuna. “They’re apples and oranges,” says the restaurants’ chef and owner Frank Bonanno. Luca, the Italian restaurant located around the corner from the much loved Mizuna is the new kid on the block.
Named after Bonanno’s son, the restaurant opened on Luca’s first birthday on February 15. Since that time, the restaurant has felt its way to the top of the dining scene. Despite a rocky beginning and the tragic death of partner Doug Fleischmann, the restaurant has hit its stride by sticking to the principles that make Mizuna one of the city’s best. “It’s the same cooking philosophy just done a little more rustically,” explains Bonanno. “We’re buying the best products possible and we’re applying the same philosophies. Mizuna is the next level of cooking – if there are four pieces of celery on a plate they better all be the same size. At Luca, the celery better be cooked and there better be four pieces but there’s not the same degree of perfection.”