Cheap Eats 2007: A la Lucia

At this lively trattoria, it’s easy to imagine you’ve stumbled into Big Night. There’s no timbale, but there’s first-rate house-made cannelloni stuffed with veal, tender chicken marsala strewn with wine-soaked mushrooms, and a very good sausage-and-pepper rigatoni.

This is simple, big-portioned, familiar fare—a truffle-free zone that fills the gap between fine dining and the local spaghetti house. Dishes are presented with care—witness the lemon-spritzed arugula framed in points of Parmesan cheese.

Luscious wines—owner Michael Nayeri spent 18 years as Galileo’s vino guru—arrive in goblet-size glasses, an unspoken invitation to stay and talk.

Except for the refreshing grapefruit-Campari sorbetto, desserts can be skipped—but so what? Louis Prima didn’t show, either.

Open Monday through Friday for lunch and dinner, Saturday and Sunday for dinner.

Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Logan Circle.