The gist: Samantha Wasser, co-founder and creative director of buzzy vegan chain by CHLOE., is back at it again with another fast-casual concept. This time she’s teaming up with chef Ali LaRaia to open an Italian restaurant, The Sosta, which makes its debut in Nolita on Thursday, July 13. Inspired by LaRaia’s travels, which included road-tripping across Italy, the food at The Sosta highlights regional cuisines with a focus on freshness, with housemade pasta, sauces and foccacia, which is baked daily.
The food: Five signature pastas headline the menu, including zucca vodka (tomato, caramelized onion, vodka, cream, basil) and bucatini arrabbiata (cherry tomato, hot cherry pepper, parsley). For an extra cost, customers can substitute the house pasta for zucchini noodles or gluten-free pasta. Focaccia sandwiches, salads and an antipasto board (pictured at top) round out the regular menu offerings, with brunch on weekends to come.
On the sweet side of things, LaRaia (who previously owned and operated a cookie company, Mirianberry Cookies) presents a rotating selection of Italian cookies, including almond biscotti, black pepper taralli and Florentines. Gelato made in collaboration with Fresco Gelateria will also be available.
Check out the full menu here.
The drinks: Look for beer (Narragansett Lager and Nu Skool Citrus IPA) and wine on tap (by the glass or carafe), plus spritzers including the classico (Prosecco, cappelletti, soda, orange) and sterzata (white wine, cappelletti, soda, lemon). There’s also a full menu of coffee drinks from Williamsburg-based roaster Devoción, including a custom coffee blend and cascara soda exclusive to The Sosta.
The space: Light woods and soft pink banquettes accent the light-filled space with a coastal Italian vibe, where muted tones and clean lines are offset by a playful pink neon sign that reads “Mangiamo Baby!”. A pastel pink terrazzo counter, where customers will place their orders, is the focal point of the room.
The details: 186 Mott Street. Open Monday to Friday 11AM–10PM and Saturday to Sunday 10AM–10PM. Brunch service forthcoming.