Sestina (vegan pasta bar)

Sestina is a new plant-based “pasta bar” in Culver City. It is a Matthew Kinney restaurant. I am a fan of Plant Food + Wine, a Matthew Kinney restaurant in Venice.

Unfortunately, I cannot recommend Sestina. There is just one reason for that: the pastas were way overcooked, some to the point of mush.

I’ll confess that I am an al dente pasta snob. Overcooked pasta is a common complaint of mine, even at well-regarded restaurants. I fear ordering pasta at restaurants that are not authentic Italian or Michelin starred, because more often than not I’m going to be disappointed.

But Sestina took mushy pasta to a new level of incompetence, particularly for a restaurant that calls itself a “pasta bar.” The pappardelle, which the waitress called the best dish, was barely holding together and disintegrated at the touch of a fork.

Other aspects of the restaurant, including flavors, were good. So hopefully they’ll learn how to boil pasta.