Inside a quaint converted house on Old Roswell St less than a block from Main Street is La Casa Italian Grill. Owner Pasquale Cardamuro opened La Casa four months ago in the old Café Efendi location to make a fresh start. Having owned several previous strip mall and shopping mall restaurants in Atlanta, the long time Alpharetta resident longed to have a free standing building in which to serve his generations old Italian recipes. Pasquale has gathered a loyal following in his 31 years in the restaurant business since he came to American from Naples. All the ingredients used are locally sourced from the pasta to the herbs grown by Pasquale himself.
The house has undergone extensive renovations since purchased. Pretty much everything except the walls has been molded to suit Pasquale’s needs. Walking across the porch to enter the restaurant feels as if you’re going to a good friend’s home for dinner. Inside it’s cozy, inviting, and warm. There are several rooms to dine in, each lending an intimate feel to your meal. La Casa would be great for either an office party or a private date out with your sweetie. The front porch overlooks a nice fountain as well as a few herb planters that were recently added. This spring and summer, La Casa will have live music on the porch. The parking lot is limited, but there are plenty of other lots to choose from within walking distance.
Growing up in the South, I have experienced my fair share of “Italian” food (I’m looking at you Olive Garden). The food you will get at La Casa is the real deal. My wife and I visited La Casa a few weeks ago for dinner, and I was very impressed not only with the quality of the food, but also with the professional level of service. Choices on the menu range from the more traditional spaghetti and meatballs to much more advanced dishes such as mussels marinara and scallops terramia. All of the sauces, breads, and desserts are made in house.
After you are seated, they bring out two different type of bread along with olive oil with herbs for dipping. Both types did not last long at our table. I had the lasagna Bolognese and can only describe it as the best lasagna I’ve ever had. The pasta was fresh, the cheese had great texture and flavor, and the sauce was superb. My wife picked the Pappardelle Bolognese, which is wide ribbons of pasta in meat sauce. She kept commenting on how fresh tasting the pasta was. There were no take home boxes. She did take home a slice of cheesecake, which was gone before we got home. She said that it rivals the cheesecakes in New York.
One interesting observation I made was one of the employees bussing a table across the room was making faces and waving at my 2 year old son. It was nice to see someone take the time to entertain even the smallest customer.
Most of the items on the menu for dinner are in the $12-18 range, but taste much richer. La Casa’s menu will change seasonally, and has already undergone a few changes since they have been open so check with them often for any changes.
La Casa is open Monday through Friday 11 AM -2 PM for lunch and Monday through Saturday 5-10 PM for dinner. They are also open on Sunday noon to 8 PM for brunch, lunch, and dinner. They are in a prime location to take advantage of the foot traffic in Alpharetta. Take a stroll off busy Main Street and come have some real, fresh, and delicious Italian food. We look forward to visiting La Casa many times in the coming year. Pasquale is frequently in the dining room greeting customers with the enthusiasm and warmth that can only come from someone who has found his true home.
La Casa Italian Grill is located at 37 Old Roswell Street in historic downtown Alpharetta.