Cafe Notte serves a taste of tapas
By Pam Starr for the Pittsburgh Tribune Review
Sunday, January 24, 2010
It’s impossible not to feel Jerry and Debbie Santucci’s excitement over their new Emsworth tapas restaurant, Cafe Notte, on Ohio River Boulevard.
They transformed an old motorcycle shop into a take-your-breath-away restaurant that has customers coming back week after week, and sometimes, day after day. It’s not just the atmosphere they love, with the wood-burning brick fireplace and curved black ceiling with fiber-optic lights that look like twinkling stars in a night sky — it’s the eclectic, tapas-style cuisine, created by 21-year-old chef David Hurley.
“He’s the most dedicated, conscientious and passionate chef I’ve ever met,” says Jerry Santucci, a builder from Connecticut, who lives with his wife in Ben Avon. “Our customers are amazed by his presentation and overwhelmed when they eat it. What he does, and how he presents it, is like a marriage. This kid is so talented.”
Hurley had been working at The Rusty Nail in Bellevue when he was asked by the Santuccis’ son, Dave Mielnicki, to come in for an interview. The two men were acquaintances, and Mielnicki knew that Hurley was a chef who had graduated from the culinary program at Bidwell Training Center in the North Side. Debbie Santucci says that when Hurley presented his tryout dish to them, they knew he was special….
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