Bar La Grassa, the joint enterprise between 112 Eatery's Isaac Becker and Nancy St. Pierre and La Belle Vie (et al.) owner Josh Thoma is now open in the old Babalu space on Washington Ave. It's a a month or so later than originally expected, but so it goes in the restaurant biz.
The "neighborhood-style" restaurant features "authentic Italian pastas" (including selections of dry and fresh) as well as a selection of antipasti, bruschetta, secondis and contornis. Early reports compliment not only the new restaurant's food, but also its drinks, service and space. One enthusiastic Chowhounder notes:
They've done an admirable job of making it new (it is disorienting to try and figure out how the map had looked at Babalu) and there are many veteran faces in the dining room and behind the bar you will likely recognize from elsewhere.
Another describeed the wine program as "pretty wide ranging," "a nice balance between old/new world styles and prices ... from $6 (btg) [to] around $24 by the bottle and up.
The Strib's Rick Nelson says he plans to park himself at "[t]he most compelling seats ... the dozen or so that line a counter facing the busy kitchen ... gleefully eating up and down that pasta list."
Looking forward to checking it out!