Paravicini’s Italian Bistro has been a staple in Colorado Springs since 2003, and owns the title of “Best Italian” restaurant since 2004.
Chef proprietor, Franco Pisani says his “success is from the ground up,” and now plans to keep growing his concept skyward with a rooftop Restaurant and bar to open in June. Appropriately named Sopra, which translates to “above,” the free standing entity will offer a comfortable space for Paravicini’s patrons to wait, enjoy sharable plates, cocktails, wine and the incredible rooftop patio views.
“Sopra is an antipasti, wine bar with classic, modern Italian,” says Pisani. “I wanted a before and after dinner restaurant for someone that wants something lighter. Charcuterie, cheese plates, different appetizers I’ve seen in my travels. The concept is shared plates, a bottle of wine, and that’s a date night.”
Although Pisani promises to include some Paravicini’s favorites, the Sopra menu will feature unique items they’re unable to execute downstairs.
Sopra’s menu will have options like an Italian version of shrimp and grits made with polenta. A caprese stack with eggplant, beets, fresh mozzarella and a balsamic glaze. Hand formed Ricotta cheese with local honey, toasted pine nuts, fresh basil, cracked sea salt and black pepper.
Pisani speaks to his Italian roots with fervor, so we can still expect satisfying and substantial portions.
“This is just like being on Mulberry Street, this is East coast Italian,” says Pisani. “I won’t go against who I am and I don’t do anything small.”
The bar side of Sopra will feature a 100 bottle wine list and classic cocktails made with Colorado spirits. “You can start with a bottle of wine and carry it down here to Paravicini’s,” says Pisani. “Or get a Manhattan made with Axe & the Oak whiskey.”
“We have uninterrupted views with a huge fire place,” says Pisani. “I didn’t just throw a bar in a room I had upstairs. It’s a huge undertaking. It has a 20 seat community table, 10 seat bar and additional table seating for 30 more.”
Pisani believes that Old Colorado City eateries are all a part of something bigger and is careful not to infringe upon the place setting that they each hold. Instead he encourages a gradual evening of eating and drinking to really appreciate all the area has to offer.
“We’re all about taking care of the guests and creating an experience.” says Pisani.
Pisani isn’t interested in recreating another Paravicini’s on top of the existing restaurant or building a franchise. He wants to solely expound upon what he has already done and offer Colorado Springs yet another version of his Italian expression. Chef Franco wants to stay true to his family’s southern Italian roots taking food from his mother’s kitchen and adding a little of his chef’s skills to step them up a notch.