Drago restaurants

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The Drago family has owned and operated some of the most famous high-end Italian restaurants in Los Angeles, California, since the 1980s.[1] They are known for their pasta dishes.[2] The family includes four brothers:Tanino, Calogero, Celestino,[3] and Giacomino.[4] Giacomino is co-owner of 11 Los Angeles restaurants—including Beverly Hills' iconic Il Pastaio and Via Alloro,[5] and referred to as the scion of the family's restaurant businesses.[6]

Celestino Drago immigrated to Los Angeles from Sicily in the mid-1970s, and held his first job with Osteria Romana Orsini on Pico Boulevard as a chef before leaving to launch Celestino, "his seminal Italian restaurant in Beverly Hills (now defunct but re-created in Pasadena under the same name)".[7] He brought over three of his brothers from the family restaurant in Messina. Celestino parted ways with investor Art Vella in 1991.[8][9][10]

Some of their dishes have been featured in cookbooks.[11][12]


  • Celestino (in Beverly Hills until 1991; now operating in Pasadena)
  • L'Arancino (closed)[13]
  • Celestino Steak House (West Hollywood, closed 2009) [14]
  • Drago[15] Santa Monica (closed)
  • Il Pastaio [6][16][17]
  • Enoteca Drago Beverly Hills wine bar
  • Drago Centro (a Stanley Felderman designed restaurant in Downtown Los Angeles, opened 2009)
  • Osteria Drago (West Hollywood, opened 2012)
  • Tanino Ristorante Bar [18]
  • Panzanella Ristorante Sherman Oaks

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Jonathan Gold Celestino Drago's New City Cuisine: Gravity of Centro, A Perino's for 2010 and beyond, plus the most glamorous view in L.A. March 18, 2009 LA Weekly
  2. ^ "Cooking with a king: Jump at the chance to take a cooking class with chef Celestino Drago. One of L.A.'s most celebrated Italian chefs, Drago has a way with pasta that just might rub off on you (if you're lucky)." LA Times events blog [1]
  3. ^ "Celestino Drago, recognized as one of "The 10 Best Chefs" in the United States by Food & Wine, is an extraordinary chef who has gained both the admiration and affection of an ever-expanding following. Anyone who has experienced his luscious pumpkin tortellini, taken one of his cooking classes at the Italian Institute or met and heard him on Crystal Cruises begins to feel that he is some beloved relative." Celestial Celestino.(opinions of Celestino Drago)Interview (preview) November 1, 2007 Restaurant Hospitality
  4. ^ S. Irene Virbila Critic's notebook; Brotherhood, Drago style; Three of the family's four brothers bring southern Italy to Sherman Oaks with Panzanella. Restaurants -- Panzanella-Sherman Oaks CA March 11, 2004 Page E.24 Los Angeles Times preview
  5. ^ Tara Weingarten Entertaining: A Star In My Kitchen March 7, 2009 Newsweek
  6. ^ a b Harry Basch, Mark Hiss, Erika Lenkert, Matthew Richard Poole Frommer's California 2008 Frommer's, 2007 ISBN 978-0-470-13734-5, 786 pages Frommer's 2008
  7. ^ S. Irene Virbilla Socal Style / Restaurants; Following Celestino's Footsteps in Westwood (preview) February 21, 1999 Page: 32 Los Angeles Times Magazine
  8. ^ Celestino Loses Its Name but Not Its Place September 23, 1994 Los Angeles Times page 26
  9. ^ "Celestino Drago, who had been brought in from Italy by the owners of Orlando-Orsini restaurant in West Los Angeles, was among the first of the professional Italian chefs to revolutionize Italian cooking in Los Angeles." Rose Dosti Revolutionizing Spaghetti Celestino Drago Serves Traditional Italian Dish With Spirit Los Angeles Times June 28, 1987 Page 30 Los Angeles Times Magazine
  10. ^ Rose Dosti "Drago Shares a Secret" January 9, 1997 Los Angeles Times Start Page: 8
  11. ^ Helene Seigel, Helene Siegel, Karen Gillingham Totally Tomato Cookbook Celestial Arts, 1996 ISBN 0-89087-788-2 pages page 54
  12. ^ Rosalind Creasy Cooking from the Garden(preview) Sierra Club Books, 1988 University of Virginia Digitized September 5, 2008 ISBN 0-87156-731-8 547 pages page 200
  13. ^ A Tapestry of Flavors, Simple and Sicilian (L'Arancino) September 20, 1998 Los Anegeles Times page 31
  14. ^ Stephani Avnet Yates Celestino Drago Best Places Southern California page 99
  15. ^ A Sicilian Craving July 16, 1995 Los Angeles Times Magazine
  16. ^ Matthew Richard Poole Frommer's Los Angeles 1998 page 125
  17. ^ [2] April 9, 1995 Los Angeles Times Magazine page 28
  18. ^ Tanino Ristorante review