stone & vine urban italian
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Stone & Vine Urban Italian
Gwen Ashley Walters
November, 2011, Page 162
Photo by David Moore
Broccoli raab with angel hair and Italian sausage
This cozy, comfortable neighborhood restaurant serves up solid drinks and service, and respectable-if-average Italian bistro fare.
It’s hard to miss the sultry stare from Sophia Loren when you walk into Stone & Vine, a cozy neighborhood Italian bistro. The “everything you see I owe to spaghetti” actress is immortalized in a mesmerizing floor-to-ceiling, black-and-white mural overlooking the wood-, stone- and brick-accented modern space.
Friendly, efficient servers point out favorites and steer diners away from potential duds. With a lengthy menu – appetizers, bruschetta, salads, panini, pizzas, calzones, pastas and full-plate entrées, plus daily “Stone” value-priced specials – there are bound to be winners and losers. In the winner column, the wine list is crafty, with smart by-the-glass choices, and draft beers range from Stella Artois to a hoppy IPA from Stone Brewery.
The bruschetta (choose 4 out of 6 for $12) could be a winner with a bread upgrade – the tasteless baguette doesn’t do the toppings justice. We sampled date and goat cheese (tastes better than it looks), smoked salmon and capers (generous), tomato and basil with balsamic (average) and roast beef gussied up with horseradish aioli (the best of the bunch).
The brick oven churns out a decent pizza (choose from a dozen plate-size options or create your own) with a crisp-then-chewy crust. The Margherita ($11) is smeared with a bland tomato sauce and topped with house-made mozzarella and basil leaves wilted and darkened from too much heat. The Milano ($13) suffers from the same tomato sauce but is given a flavorful fillip from pepperoni, chunky Italian sausage, mushrooms, green peppers and onions.
Panini ($7-$9) come on toasted ciabatta with a choice of addictive house-made chips, French fries or a balsamic-dressed green salad. The sausage and peppers ($9) is messy but delicious, and the Sicilian tuna ($9) shines with oil-packed tuna, red onion, tomato and mozzarella.
We upgraded broccoli raab and angel hair pasta ($11) with sliced Italian sausage ($3), but spaghetti and meatballs ($12) was better, thanks to tender meatballs and a lusty tomato sauce. Eggplant parmigiana ($13) is memorable: sliced thin, battered, fried, stacked high and covered with mozzarella and sweet, garlicky tomato sauce.
Desserts include tiramisu ($6), cheesecake ($7), nondescript mini-cannoli (two for $4 or a full order for $7), and zeppole ($6), which is not the traditionally fried doughnut balls rolled in sugar but squares of deep-fried puff pastry doused with powdered sugar and served with industrial chocolate syrup and raspberry jam.
inside Stone & Vine Urban Italian
Stone & Vine Urban Italian
: 9343 E. Shea Blvd., Scottsdale
: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday-Thursday; 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday; 4 p.m.
to 11 p.m. Saturday; 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday
: Bruschetta (4 for $12), Margherita pizza ($11), spaghetti and
meatballs ($12), eggplant parmigiana ($13)
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