Restaurants / Openings

Long-Awaited Italian Restaurant Via Triozzi Feels Like an Instant Classic on Lower Greenville

Leigh Hutchinson Serves Up So Much More Than Great Handmade Pasta

BY // 08.16.23

Inspired by her time living in Scandicci, Italy, Dallasite Leigh Hutchinson’s first restaurant, Via Triozzi, debuts this Friday, August 18, in a long-vacant space on Lower Greenville. There will be authentic, handmade pasta and a fresh seasonal menu, but the real magic of Via Triozzi comes from the chef-owner’s long journey to get there.

Growing up, Hutchinson’s Sicilian-American grandmother (Nani Angie) loved to entertain. “Our family would have big Sunday lunches and dinners,” she tells PaperCity. “Easter and Christmas are big in Italian culture.” These events were large, loud, and deeply influential: her two uncles went on to open restaurants in Austin and Buffalo, New York. Now, it’s her turn.

Via Triozzi Dallas
One of Via Triozzi’s specialties is handmade pasta. (Courtesy of Via Triozzi)

The Inspiration Behind Via Triozzi

In college, Hutchinson spent three months studying abroad in Florence, where her culinary dreams began. But it wasn’t until she lost both her grandparents in 2015 that she finally took action.

“I thought, ‘Who’s going to keep traditions going?’,” Hutchinson says. “So I quit my job, sold my things, and moved to Italy with my dog.”

She spent two years in Florence, studying the country’s food and culture at Istituto Lorenzo de’ Medici, as well as working a 10-month stage with GiglioCooking founder Marcella Ansaldo. During this time, she also worked olive crushes and wine harvests around the country. “My goal was to open a restaurant to feed people good, true Italian food,” she says.

Hutchinson then went on to work at two of her uncle’s restaurants in Buffalo, New York, making pasta and learning the ropes as a line cook. She also spent time working at Dallas’ Saint Rocco’s New York Italian and Beverley’s on Fitzhugh Avenue.

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But she always knew how she wanted Via Triozzi to feel. “I drew inspiration from the restaurants in Florence,” she says. “I wanted it to be comfortable, familial, and transportive. Not pretentious at all.”

Via Triozzi
Via Triozzi features a two-story space with high ceilings and checkerboard terrazzo floors in Lower Greenville.

The Design of Via Triozzi

Hutchinson was totally hands-on with the design of the space, stocking it with plenty of her own knickknacks and family heirlooms — she wanted it to feel like her grandmother’s house. The chef also brought back many pieces from Italy, including unique flower vases for each table and handmade check presenters. Other decor was sourced at antique stores.

When you walk into the restaurant (and viewable through the window) on Greenville Avenue, you’ll find a glass-encased pasta-making station immediately to your left. The space features high ceilings, a checkerboard terrazzo floor, and a long, 10-seat marble-topped bar. There’s also a grab-and-go fridge for wine and bites to take home. The dining room features booths and tables (not covered in white tablecloths as it’s supposed to feel more laid-back, Hutchinson notes). And a stairwell leads upstairs to a second dining space, the terrazza, which will open later on.

Via Triozzi
Via Triozzi offers a seasonal menu including Ricotta Montana — whipped house ricotta with grilled zucchini.

Via Triozzi’s Seasonal Menu

“At its core, Italian food is simple, made with seasonal ingredients,” Hutchinson says. Most dishes will rotate, but one favorite item will lead the permanent line-up: Hutchinson’s famous Lasagne al Forno.

“The lasagna business began during the pandemic. I made it for a friend and then another person asked me for it, and another,” she laughs. By word-of-mouth, it became a full-on business. This will be one of the dishes available in the grab-and-go fridge to reheat at home.

There will also be meatballs, house ricotta, and Hutchinson’s grandmother’s Chicken Cacciatore recipe. The opening menu includes Coccoli (a crispy dough, cheese, and prosciutto starter), fried squash blossoms, Tagliatelle with Ragù Bolognese, and Bistecca Alla Fiorentina made with an aged Texas-raised Porterhouse. One of the stand-out desserts is the Cannolo Sbagliato, pizzelle filled with spoons of cannoli filling, chocolate, and pistachios.

Via Triozzi
The 10-seat marble-topped bar at Via Triozzi is stunning. (Courtesy of Via Triozzi)

Another intriguing part of the menu is the cocktail list. The restaurant offers unique takes on the classics, including twists on the dirty martini, espresso martini, Paper Plane, Negroni, and more. A family drink for Hutchinson, the Manhattan will be barrel-aged. “My grandfather had a cocktail kit growing up that he would bring over to other people’s houses,” she laughs.

Additionally, the new spot features a table-side amaro program — featuring Italian digestives to accompany dessert. Italian wines will also be primarily from small-batch producers (many female and/or family-owned) focused on natural, low-intervention techniques — which means the list (21 by the glass and 60 by the bottle) will be constantly changing.

“I go back to Italy every year and it’s an ever-evolving learning process,” Hutchinson says. “But my focus with Via Triozzi is comfortable, real, seasonal Italian food from my lens of how I lived it and know it now.”

Reservations for Via Triozzi are now open on Resy.

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