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RESTAURANTS

Alfresco Italian

October 05, 2006|Leslee Komaiko

You can have the moon and pizza pie (or pasta at least) at any of these Italians with patios.

Trattoria Amici

There are just a handful of tables under the big canvas umbrellas outside this diminutive spot annexed to the Beverly Terrace Hotel. But often when you can't score a reservation inside, you can get one outdoors. The lemony shaved artichoke, hearts of palm and Parmesan salad is among the town's best. And the hearty tomato soup with basil just may have curative powers.

* Salad, $12.95; soup, $5.95. 469 N. Doheny Drive, Beverly Hills, (310) 858-0271.

Sapori

The semi-enclosed patio, surrounded by greenery and anchored by a rustic fireplace, is where many regulars prefer to enjoy the thin-crust pizzas, made in a brick oven. Chef-owner Sal Mancini, a native of Sicily, also does a swell veal scaloppini. Get it piccata style with capers and lemon, or with Gorgonzola sauce.

* Veal, $22.95. 1080 Bayside Drive, Newport Beach, (949) 644-4220.

Il Cielo

Many a marriage proposal has been ventured at this 20-year-old charmer on the outskirts of Beverly Hills, and for good reason. The patio spaces are simple, lovely and, because they can be covered, available for year-round wooing. Begin with the burrata and tomato salad and perhaps continue with the grilled whole branzino (sea bass) served tableside.

* Salad, $11; branzino, $30. 9018 Burton Way, Beverly Hills, (310) 276-9990.

C&O Trattoria

The Italian shtick starts from the second you call this popular party spot with the expansive patio. A nightly sing-along of "That's Amore" keeps things festive. And though the food's main distinction is the huge quantity in which it is served -- think massive bowls of linguine and clams and fettuccine Alfredo -- the garlic rolls are hard to resist.

* Pasta, $8.95 to $18.95. 31 Washington Blvd., Venice, (310) 823-9491.

Pane e Vino

Just about everyone requests the patio, surrounded by greenery and accented by a trickling fountain, at this easy breezy Italian. It's always buzzing. But remember smoking is permitted, so be forewarned if that's going to put a crimp in your enjoyment of that half rotisserie chicken or tortelloni stuffed with dandelion greens and ricotta.

* Half-chicken, $18.50. 8265 Beverly Blvd., L.A., (323) 651-4600.

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