I've lived in Santa Monica for nearly three years now, and I only recently discovered Uovo, located on 2nd street in the heart of Santa Monica.
Uovo is a pasta bar from the Sugarfish co-owners featuring fresh, handmade noodles and an array of sauces. They also have a small but tasteful selection of wine and beers.
Their journey for the best pasta started in Bologna in Emilia Romagna, the epicenter of fresh pasta. They wanted to give their guests something nobody ever else has done before, a taste of Italy using ingredients that are from Italy itself.
The secret is they overnight the pasta to the U.S in a temperature-controlled cabin where the flight time becomes part of the needed resting time.
The ingredients are kept simple, eggs, flour, and salt. The best flour is needed and can be acquired, but the Italian eggs are not available here. The eggs in Italy make a rich, deep yellow noodle that tastes like none other.
Bologna is the region of the sfogline, women who have spent a lifetime mastering the art of pasta-making; finding the same expertise anywhere else is nearly impossible. Uovo's sfogline use the age-old technique of sheeting and cutting. It's significantly more labor-intensive than the modern extrusion method but creates pasta with a superior texture and ability to bond with the sauces.
This is the perfect place to go to for date night or even a casual dinner during the week. I always start off with a glass of their Vermentino or Montepulciano D'Abruzzo if I'm feeling like a red wine that night
We're slowly making our way through the menu, but so far, I have tried the Ragu, which is the original “Bolognese” recipe with beef and pork. This recipe does not include cheese, milk, nor cream, but it's absolutely mouthwatering. This is the exact recipe from “Antica Trattoria Della Gigina” that dates back to the 1950s
The second thing I highly recommend is the Amatriciana which is handmade tonnarelli in a sauce with exclusively imported tomatoes from Basilicata, Pecorino Romano, imported Italian guanciale, and red chili pepper. This dish is full of flavor, and the guanciale will have you begging for more.
The first time I came here, I tried the Cacio e Pepe, which is handmade tonnarelli with Pecorino Romano and a blend of imported black pepper. It was okay to me initially, but I gave it another go the other day and scolded myself for not ordering it more frequently. It's creamy, delicious, and comforting. The flavor of the pepper is bold and will have you wondering why on earth the pepper in your house doesn't taste exactly like this one.
Another simple but flavorful dish is the Arrabbiata which is handmade tonnarelli in a sauce made with exclusively imported tomatoes from Basilicata; it has red chili pepper, garlic, and parsley. They also offer this in a gluten-free version which I haven't tried, but it's incredible either way.
The menu also includes lasagna from Bologna, which is made with seven layers of green pasta with a sauce of beef, pork, cheese, and bechamel. If you're a lasagna lover, you will absolutely love this dish.
End your meal on a sweet note by getting their Tiramisu’ al cucchiaio, which is their version of tiramisu’ inspired by Felice a Testaccio in Rome. I always order two.