Wednesday, January 29, 2014

M Street's Italian Venture Moto Will Open Wednesday, Feb. 5 [UPDATE]

Posted By on Wed, Jan 29, 2014 at 3:22 PM

moto-logo_crop.jpg

Update: The opening day for Moto Cucina + Enoteca has been postponed to Wednesday, Feb. 5, according to a spokeswoman.

MStreet Entertainment, restaurateur Chris Hyndman's group that encompasses a block of establishments on McGavock Street in the Gulch — Kayne Prime, Saint Añejo, Tavern, Virago, Whiskey Kitchen and events space The Rosewall — announces that Hyndman's new Italian food and wine spot, Moto Cucina + Enoteca, is poised to open its doors this next week.

Hyndman is notoriously tight-lipped about his projects until launch, so the press release is a relative abbondanza of promotional info.

Moto aims to deliver "rustic-modern Italian cuisine," under the direction of executive chef Andy Hayes. Hayes' menu represents "a contemporary approach to authentic Italian cooking that utilizes product consciously sourced from local farms and artisans balanced by premium product imported from Italy."

It looks like the menu will hit comfort food notes (steak, house-made lasagna) along with some more adventurous ingredients (sea urchin):

Moto’s headliners are seasonal ‘market’ items such as cherry smoked cobia and as a specialty, polenta with prawns, lobster and sea urchin. Another highlight is perfectly crafted house-made pasta dishes. While there are many to choose from, unique offerings like blueberry balsamic lasagna and black pepper tagliatelle are sure to be new favorites. There is also a comprehensive steak and chop section borrowed from nationally recognized sister MStreet restaurant, Kayne Prime.

MStreet restaurants, like the recently opened Saint Añejo, tend to deliver impressive interiors and lots of attention to atmosphere, and it sounds like Moto will be no exception.

Moto’s vibe is chic, comfortable and sophisticated. Modern Italian sex appeal comes to life against rustic-industrial bones of the brick warehouse setting. The vibrant atmosphere evokes the warmth and soulfulness of the Italian experience. Interiors are richly appointed with nods to classic Italian design elements organized with fashionable furnishings and finishes.

The name includes "Enoteca," and since an enoteca is wine-focused restaurant, Moto has made its wine list a prominent feature:

Moto features over 30 ever-changing wines by the glass and 250 labels in total. Approximately half of the wine list is Italian and the other half thoughtful selections from around the globe. Much focus is given to alternative and boutique wineries of outstanding character and quality. The bar concocts its own house-made limoncello and an inspired mixology list of couture cocktails.

Moto is scheduled to open its doors this Thursday, Jan. 30. It will then operate daily starting at 5 p.m. Reservations are "strongly recommended." The phone number is 615-736-5305. It also appears reservations for Moto are available now on OpenTable for dates starting Thursday.

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