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“People make more of a big deal about cooking risotto than it actually is,” says Sotto Sotto’s Riccardo Ullio, who’s eaten this luxuriously creamy staple of northern Italy his whole life.
Chef and restaurateur Riccardo Ullio, best known for Inman Park spots Fritti and Sotto Sotto, is set to open Novo this spring/summer in Dunwoody. Ullio’s most recent projects include the now-shuttered Beleza (Brazilian) and Cuerno (Spanish), as well as Midtown’s Escorpion (Mexican). With Novo, he hopes to return to his Italian roots.
Sotto Sotto owner Riccardo Ullio had a frightening Facebook status update to share with diners Wednesday night: "Nothing like coming to work and seeing that Sotto Sotto almost burned down." Alas, Ullio is one of the few chefs in Atlanta not prone to exaggeration. The status update came complete with a photo of the popular restaurant's still-smoking roof.
ATL Food Chatter: June 14, 2011 (To receive the Chatter and other culinary tidbits directly in your inbox, sign up for our weekly dining newsletter) Riccardo Ullio deserves credit for his resilience. After last spring’s closing of his two Juniper Street ventures—the Spanish-themed Cuerno, which was revamped toward the end as Lupe Taqueria, and the Brazilian cocktail lounge Beleza—the owner of Inman Park's Sotto Sotto and Fritti is back on the Midtown restaurant scene with Escorpion. The restaurant resides at 5th and Peachtree, where Eno long lived and 5th Street Cafe recently flamed out in less than three months. Esporpion is a “tequila bar and cantina” featuring cocktails inspired by indigenous Mexican ingredients and a friendly menu that includes ceviches, familiar appetizers (guac, queso fundito), tacos that you can order individually or by plates of four, and a few entrees such as Spring Mountain chicken with red mole and grapefruit segments. Ullio fills us in on the restaurant’s origin and direction:
This weekend's Atlanta Food & Wine Festival attendees already have something to look forward to next week when their triglycerides levels once again begin to to tumble toward Earth. Sotto Sotto and Fritti chef-owner Riccardo Ullio is set to debut Escorpion, a brand new Mexican tequila bar and cantina at 800 Peachtree Street in the space formerly occupied by Eno and later, The 5th Street Cafe owned by Atlanta Hawk Zaza Pachulia. The short-lived 5th Street Cafe opened exactly a year ago this month.
Bragging rights were on the line last week at Fritti when Esquire magazine dining critic John Mariani and Sotto Sotto and Fritti chef/owner Riccardo Ullio got into a spirited debate over — wait for it — espresso cups.
ATL Food Chatter: October 26, 2009 (To receive the Chatter and other culinary tidbits directly in your inbox, sign up for our weekly dining newsletter)“Keeping up with the times” is how Riccardo Ullio described his decision to convert his former Spanish-themed Cuerno space into Lupe, a ninety-seat Midtown Mexican taqueria, at a friends and family event last week. He explained how economic circumstances prompted the move from “a destination restaurant to a neighborhood place.”