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This Calabrian Restaurant Is Bringing Dandy Back

Think of the concept of a dandy person for a second: someone whose clothing is precise, who carefully selects their words, who lives in pursuit of an aristocratic superiority of the mind. Now think of how you would design a restaurant in tribute to dandyism. Il Dandy, a chic Italian restaurant in San Diego, tries to achieve just that vibe. With a mix of early 20th century Italian aesthetics referencing Art Deco, Italian Futurism, and Italian Mid-Century Modern, the 78-seat restaurant looks like just the spot where Oscar Wilde and Charles Baudelaire would hold salons at in their heyday.

Designer Agostino Sannino chose a palette that reflected the beauty of the Calabrian coast in the south of Italy: Mediterranean aqua, bergamot green, and a yellow the sumptuous shade of extra virgin olive oil. There’s also a large art installation of southern Italy above the massive 2,300 square foot kitchen and replicas of ancient “Bronzi di Riace” statues – full size Greek bronzes of naked bearded warriors – which were recovered off the coast of Riace in the 1970s.