Chef/Owner Pat Pascarella — Grana, The White Bull — on Thursday announced that his latest Italian import, Bastone, plans to officially open its doors in West Midtown in early March 2022. News of Bastone’s opening timeline arrives days after Pascarella unveiled plans for a second Grana.
Bastone will round out Pascarella’s trilogy with a Naples-inspired mozzarella bar serving hand-stretched mozzarella, pasta, Italian wines, and craft cocktails. Bastone will open for dinner only, at 887 Howell Mill Road NW. Take-out & delivery will be available in addition to dine-in service.
“I’ve always wanted to create a concept like Bastone — it really is the heart and soul of my roots,” Pascarella said in a press release. “Mozzarella is a fundamental part of the cuisine in my family’s hometown of Naples. We’re excited to pioneer the idea that a great restaurant can be built around one main ingredient, and are eager for Atlantans to enjoy the best of everything it has to offer in an authentic way.”
With a Neapolitan namesake referring to a card deck’s “ace of clubs” that dually pays homage to Pascarella’s Italian-born grandfather who used to scream “Bastone!” as he played his favorite card during games, the eatery will offer a mozzarella-fueled version of the classics of Naples gastronomy.
Complete with a robust mozzarella and salumi bar with optional bread service, Bastone will also offer a gran degustazione — “grand tasting” — including mozzarella di bufala, ricotta di bufala, burrata, smoked mozzarella and fatt a mano accompanied by boards of prosciutto, roasted artichokes, eggplant caponata, and more.
A selection of salads, small plates, and desserts join an ever-evolving list of house-made pasta including doppio with fig, ricotta, prosciutto, arugula and vincotto, orecchiette with pancetta, escarole, bone marrow and crumbs, farro garganelli with beef cheeks, radicchio & pistachio and cresc’ tajat bolognese with ricotta di bufala & hazelnuts.
Behind the bar, beverage director Anthony Panzica has curated a libations program designed to complement the menu with its selections of “rare and thoughtfully sourced” Italian wines, local beers, and craft cocktails with ingredients sourced from local farmers.
Designed to coincide with the menu’s roots, Bastone will arrive in the form of a 150-seat eatery “evoking the immersive tastes of Naples” together with Pascarella’s family recipes.
“Channeling the quintessential Neapolitan kitchens of Pascarella’s ancestors remixed with a collaboration of warm & luxe details, the space welcomes guests with endless natural light reflecting off of the aged white brick & subway tile-adorned walls, and is met with white marble countertops, leather tufted barstools & camel banquettes, and industrial ceilings & accents throughout,” according to the release.
Complete with an outdoor back patio embellished with a mural alongside a daytime pasta-making room that moonlights as a private dining area, the indoor dining space boasts an oversized wrought-iron and glass divider that separates the main dining room from the anchoring 18-seat split bar — a unique area made with the intention of focusing half of its efforts on fresh, hand-stretched mozzarella & the other half on the concept’s soon-to-be buzzed-about beverage program.