La Scala Trattoria is the latest addition to one of the city’s up-and-coming dining destinations: the stretch of Alameda Avenue between Logan and Downing streets.

The two-month-old restaurant—one large room with deep burgundy walls—lacks the cozy neighborhood feel one hopes for in a trattoria, but this could have been because during my recent visit it was mostly empty. (Granted, it was a warm evening, and pasta may not have been on diners’ minds.)

My appetizer special, thinly sliced and grilled eggplant rolled around tangy goat cheese and sweet sun-dried tomatoes, was fresh and simple and paired well with the glass of crisp Frascati. (La Scala offers a nice selection of predominantly Italian wines.) The house salad with mixed greens, cranberries, blue cheese, candied walnuts, and apples was also simple but satisfying. The main dish, however, a shrimp puttanesca, was topped with a rather ordinary red sauce and completely devoid of the heat and zest you expect from this dish. A better choice was the salmon piccata atop angel hair pasta, which was dressed with a light, lemony cream sauce.

While the food had more hits than misses, the service at La Scala was frustrating and sporadic. Our server lacked the ability to read the table, she brought the entrées out about 10 minutes apart, and was unable to provide any helpful information about the wine list.

Yes, La Scala has potential as a neighborhood spot, but this one is not yet worth making a special trip for.

282 S. Logan St., 720-536-8085