John Rittmaster presides at this Walnut Creek restaurant and wine shop, which boasts one of the Bay Area’s largest and best Italian lists. It’s been the local choice for celebrations since 1974; since Rittmaster took over the wine buying in 1994, has turned it into a destination for wine lovers as well. His affection for Piedmont in particular is especially clear in the deep array of nebbiolo, with bottles from greats like Vietti, Voerzio, Gaja, E. Pira and Produttori. Chef Peter Chastain respects the wines, with straight-ahead house-made salumi, pastas and meats; think Sassetti Brunello paired with rabbit cacciatore.
1522 N. Main St., Walnut Creek, California
This story appears in the print issue of October 2017.
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