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Drago Ristorante Drives Into Petersen Automotive Museum With Streamlined Italian Fare

The suave Italian restaurant opened yesterday in Mid-Wilshire

Drago’s restaurant empire has found its next dominion: the Petersen Automotive Museum along Mid-Wilshire’s Museum Row. A collaboration between brothers Celestino, Calogero, Tanino, and Giacomino, the eponymously named Drago Ristorante is a true meld of decades of Italian restaurant know-how in Los Angeles. The original Drago in Santa Monica closed back in 2012 after a 21 year run, but the group continues to run Drago Centro in Downtown LA, as well as a slew of other eateries around town include Il Pastaio and Celestino.

Baccala Livornese: cod with caper broth, tomatoes, pee wee potatoes
Sabin Orr

The menu at Drago Ristorante inside the Petersen Auto Museum serves items that are mostly in line with their other concepts: antipasti, wood-fired pizzas, house made pasta, and composed plates like sauteed lamb filet, and jumbo scallops with polenta.

There’s a handy lunch service for office workers and museum visitors while dinner turns up the formality slightly with a more elegant dining experience. Starters include a burrata salad and calamari salad while casual bites like a trattoria burger and pan-roasted chicken breast with mustard seeds and sauteed green beans occupy the lunch bill of fare. For dinner, there’s a cacio e pepe pizza or cavatelli with venison ragu.

The design itself of the room seems to be in line with the Petersen Automotive Museum’s new exterior aesthetic, with clean swooping lines and an international look by Felderman Keatinge + Associates. Stanley Felderman and co-designer Nancy Keatinge call it a "streamlined modernism," melding traditional and contemporary elements, much like Drago’s approach to the food.

Drago Ristorante is open daily for lunch from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. while dinner service runs 5:30 to 10 p.m. Sunday to Friday and until 11 p.m. on Saturdays. The restaurant officially opened December 12.

Drago Ristorante 6060 Wilshire Blvd. Los Angeles, CA 90036

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