The restaurant industry in Temecula, California has taken on a new twist. Many top restaurants have featured the area's local wines on their menus for a long time, but there's now a new local beverage being served. If you haven't traveled on Diaz Road lately, you're in for a big surprise. There's a lot more than just the local DMV. At least six micro breweries have sprouted up in the past six months including Wien's Brewery which is a division of Wien's Family Cellars, one of the oldest wineries in the Temecula Valley.
Scarcella's Restaurant has been chosen as one of the few select restaurants in the Inland Empire to feature Wien's top selling beer -- Insomnia. This super hoppy IPA should probably be renamed "Amnesia" only because, after consuming two glasses, you might not remember the rest of the night. It complements the wonderful Italian dishes that the 35-year-old Scarcella's Italian Grill Restaurant serves 7-nights-a-week.
One of Scarcella's unique appetizers is the Eggplant Wraps. Imagine a mozzarela caprese dish enveloped in a long slice of lightly sauteed eggplant which is then drizzled with a tiny bit of olive oil and generously garnished with fresh basil. This dish is a meal in itself and is always freshly prepared to order. The generously-sized appetizer could easily be shared by a table of four guests. It has phenomenal flavor that will beckon you to come back to try it again.
But there is much more to this restaurant than just their super-sized appetizers. Their Linguine with white clam sauce is by far the best in the city of Temecula and is served with fresh manila clams and a perfectly seasoned garlic white clam sauce. Their homemade rolls are remnants of freshly unused pizza dough baked and served hot from the oven. They are incredibly delicious!
Scarcella's Restaurants is one of the few restaurants in the area that delivers which makes it a favorite for those that prefer a catered-in meal for the night. They feature typically four soups per evening such as Cream of Asparagus, French Onion, Lentil soup and their famous homemade Minestrone. This is one of the few restaurants in Temecula that doesn't have a microwave! You'll be assured of not only eating a health-conscious meal, but a tasty one as well.
Their recently remodeled New York style bar has one TV which is large enough to view from any seat in the bar dining area. They also feature outdoor seating and live outdoor entertainment during the summer months. Their outdoor patio also has heaters in case it gets a little too chilly at night.
A bit hard to find, Scarcella's Restaurant is located in the row of shops where the pottery and yoga studios are located directly towards the back of the strip mall in the same shopping plaza where Armstrong Gardens is located. It's only five minutes from the De Luz area of Temecula and within minutes of wine country. Just pull in from Ynez Road and drive straight in as far as you can and park your car. You'll find it!
If you have not eaten there since the restaurant switched hands, you owe it to yourself to give it another try. All dishes are freshly made to order and to your liking. The reasonable prices, attentive servers, and authentic Italian food will have you coming back time after time. Happy hour is served nightly Monday through Friday until 6:00 pm and nightly specials are served throughout the week.
I'm giving this restaurant a solid FIVE stars for not only consistency and high food standards, but also for having Wien's Insomnia beer which makes it just another reason to come back.
UPDATE: March 9, 2013... this restaurant is moving to larger space and has temporarily closed. We will update you when they reopen in Temecula.