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Silver Lake's Kettle Black Is The Newest Destination For Wood-Fired Pizza And Handmade Pasta

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Silver Lake's Kettle Black is a new Italian restaurant serving up delicious pastas and pizzas from chef Sydney C. Hunter III (Petit Trois, Superba). It's got both an easygoing, neighborhood feel and a fantastic happy hour. The space once belonged to the California Bank, but now exists as a 105-seat restaurant with a patio—though they kept the vault door. It's a casual, pleasant eatery with hardwood floors, an open kitchen, beautiful tile work and a small, street-facing patio. The wood-burning stove is clearly visible from the main dining area, and planks of wood are creatively stored beneath the staircase that leads to a small, intimidate dining area and around the kitchen area.

The menu is not overwhelming, and there are plenty of choices for vegetarians. There's a great eggplant dish that features thick hunks of eggplant in olive oil, garlic, chili flakes, parmesan and saba vin cotto ($10) and a cauliflower dish with pine nuts and pickled raisins ($12), both roasted in the oven. They have five different pizzas, ranging in price from $13 to $18. The housemade dough bakes nice and chewy, with a well-seasoned crust. A popular choice is the the classic margarita, but the polpette is an interesting one, too. Instead of lots of gooey cheese, expect 'nduja, which is a spread made from salumi and spices, and generous hunks of their flavorful meatballs. Or there's the funghi, topped with taleggio and gorgonzola cheese and crimini mushrooms.

All of Kettle Black's pastas are made fresh daily, and are in portions suitable for sharing if you order a few to try. The pappardelle is a buttery, mushroom dish, while the lighter agnolotti comes in a bright green color, stuffed with zucchini pesto and flavored with a refreshing lemon zest. The cacio e pepe is a simple, yet flavorful choice. The dish consists of delicate cappellini, piled with parmesan brodo (broth) and black peppercorn. Those who prefer their pastas with meat could try the gnocci with braised lamb. Pastas range from $15 to $19.Kettle Black also has a number of cocktails available, including your classics—aviations, penicillins, negronis—and some clever concoctions of their own for $12. My favorite was their sweet and smoky scotch cocktail, made with peach pluot cordial, averna, St. Germain and lemon. They also carry a selection of infusions, and you'd be remiss to skip over their prodigious vermouth selection, some of them made in-house and surprisingly easy to sip.

Come happy hour, which is daily from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday through Wednesday from 11 p.m. to 2 a.m., you can take advantage of their Pizza & Pop deal. This consists of a margarita pizza and either a Peroni, or a glass of red or white wine for $15. Other happy hour deals include $4 Peroni or $6 glasses of wine. Should prefer a cocktail, you can get a Manhattan, a Negroni, an Aperol Spritz or a Punch for $8. There are also food deals, including a $7 meatball sandwich, wood-fired cauliflower for $8 or a $15 charcuterie board.

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Kettle Black is located at 3705 Sunset Blvd. in Silver Lake, (323) 641-3705.