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Trend Alert: Modern Italian Cuisine

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Italian cuisine is nothing new in America; we’ve loved spaghetti and meatballs almost as long as apple pie. But these days, modern Italian cuisine — a chef’s particular interpretation of that country’s flavors and techniques–is more popular than ever. Here are 4 modern Italian restaurants to know.

Il Buco Alimentari & Vineria: An offshoot of popular NYC restaurant Il Buco next door, Il Buco Alimentari & Vineria nails every aspect of the cuisine, from breads to its own cured meats to housemade pastas and fabulous gelato.

Costata: Never heard of an Italian steakhouse? It’ll make perfect sense once you visit chef Michael White’s latest NYC operation, with killer steaks, pastas, and cocktails by legendary barman Eben Freeman.

SPQR: This San Francisco restaurant considers itself Italian-inspired California cuisine, with a menu classically formatted as antipasti, primi, and secondi, but leaving room for a great deal of innovation in those categories, and taking advantage of Northern California’s fabulous produce.

Balena:  American cured meats, bruschetta with unorthodox toppings like lamb liver, pizza with grilled peaches and speck: they’re all on the menu at Chicago’s popular restaurant Balena, another Italian-inspired restaurant whose style is all its own.

[Photo: Costata]

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