The Cafe Lago experience is handmade. Inheriting the spirit of hospitality, the taste for seasonal ingredients, and the joy that comes from food made by hand from her parents, owner and founder Carla Leonardi has instilled these values within her cooks, customers, and food. Each cook understands the importance of the simple beauty of a plate of fettuccine, a blistered wood-fired margherita pizza, and the importance of biscotti at the end of the meal. Regular customers depend on the simple, elegant flavors of the fettucine with meatballs and the legendary lasagna, a labor-intensive study in lightness.
Born in northwestern Tuscany, Carla learned about the importance of a simple yet strong base. The Soffritto is the vegetable base of the sauce, which gently caramelizes the vegetables to bring out their sweetness. The underlying sofritto of the Lago experience is the feeling of family that gently enhances the rich flavors of the food. Like the head of a family, Lago's pasta chef Justin Kenney is a respected teacher and has been lovingly making ravioli, lasagna and gnocchi for twenty years, setting the standard for our kitchen staff. Since 1990, Lago has been a cornerstone of the Montlake neighborhood.