Italian fare with a pirate theme: Say ‘Ahoy’ to Gambi’s

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The pirate theme runs deep at the new Town Square restaurant in Somersett. Dimly lit with plush red booths and small tables, the newly opened Gambi’s follows the script when it comes to Italian eating, until, of course, you hit the deck. Glass etched with treasure maps, mermen in the bathrooms, shiny silver skeleton heads as napkin holders—it’d be impossible to miss it.

Gimmicks aside (and we’d just like to be clear that we appreciate this particular brand of gimmicks, which is anything but cheap), Gambi’s offers a new date night spot to those in Reno, especially those who call Somersett home.

You may need a treasure map of your own to find the goods. If you park in the main lot, the “front” door is blocked off with a sign that says to head in through the lounge, which is actually a really cool place to sit for dinner service or drinks. From there, you’ll step outside and hook to the left to find the main entrance and the hostess stand settled in the communal area of Town Square and backing up to the main lawn often inhabited by other outside diners and corn hole players.

Once you get inside, the deep, rich woods and romantic details transport you to a world far away. The theme overall is a play on the wine and whiskey business the owner also dabbles in. That being said, he knows a thing or two about liquor, and this is a place you’ll want to take your time to enjoy. So, order up a glass of deep, red wine or choose from a lineup of cocktails before diving into the menu.

As you order drinks, bread is dropped on your table as a first course. But the big surprise is that it isn’t your typical dinner rolls, but rather a small loaf of toasted garlic bread underneath that napkin—a treat for many who love carbs.

Scallops with risotto, asparagus and a blood orange relish at Gambi’s in Reno, Nev. Photo: Courtesy Gambi’s

For anyone at sea, it’s hard to pass up a little of the local cuisine. And for me, it’s always hard to pass up calamari. The calamari is crispy and fresh, not chewy or overly fishy. There is a fair mix of rings and tentacle pieces served alongside a Calabrian chili aioli and, as any good calamari is, a slice of charred lemon.

The fried artichoke hearts are also delicious if you’re down to eat a little heavy. (Personally, we justify the extra calories because we’re also eating a vegetable.) Crusted with panko and parmesan and served next to a ramekin of marinara sauce, we recommend giving them a dip in the aioli for better flavor.

This is only the top of the iceberg when it comes to appetizers. A charcuterie board decorated with a chef’s selection of cheeses, a burrata perfected with snap peas, asparagus, and watermelon radish, and sweet and savory coconut shrimp, are all worth their weight in gold.

Moving on to entrees, the portions are sizeable, which means following up a couple of appetizers lends itself well to sharing a meal. The Truffle Gnocchi, for example, is soft and doughy, elevated by slivers of creamy duck sausage and wild mushrooms. For those still interested in diving into the seafood categories, a Lobster Ravioli served with roasted fennel is divine.

This doesn’t even go the depths—with a full list of fresh catches, hunks of meat and pizzas to explore, the fare lends itself to a place you can visit and revisit often, trying something new on each return trip. You’re not likely to run out of options anytime soon, which is good news for neighbors who have been long awaiting a new eatery in this corner of town.

Details 7665 Town Square WayReno, NV 89523

(775) 622-4491

Sunday–Thursday 4 to 9 p.m.

Friday–Saturday 4 to 10 p.m.

Happy Hour 4 to 6 p.m. daily Website

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President of Armenia to pay state visit to Italy

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At the invitation of the President of the Italian Republic Sergio Matarella, the President of the Republic of Armenia Armen Sarkissian and his wife Nouneh Sarkissian will leave for Italy on October 5 for a state visit. This is the first state visit of the President of Armenia to Italy during the 30-year history of the Republic of Armenia.

Presidents Sarkissian and Matarella are scheduled to have a private talk at the Quirinale Palace in the residence of the President of the Italian Republic, which will be followed by an extended meeting of the delegations. The Presidents of Armenia and Italy will make a statement to the press.

Within the framework of the visit, President Sarkissian is also scheduled to meet with the Chairman of the Italian Council of Ministers Mario Draghi. The President of Armenia will also meet with the President of the Italian Senate Maria Elizabeta Caselati, the President of the Chamber of Deputies Roberto Fico, and the Mayor of Rome.

The meetings will focus on the deepening of bilateral relations, the expansion of mutually beneficial cooperation in various fields, regional issues and developments, as well as other issues of mutual interest.

During the visit, President Sarkissian will also be hosted at the Levonian College in Rome, where he will meet with representatives of the Armenian community.

Issues of deepening the cooperation in the educational and cultural spheres are also on the agenda of President Sarkissian’s state visit. At the University of La Sapienza in Rome, the President will attend the reopening of the Chair of Armenology, and will deliver a lecture at the University of Bologna.

An exhibition of works by great Armenian painters Hovhannes Aivazovsky, Gevorg Bashinjaghyan, Martiros Saryan, Vardges Surenyants and Hakob Kojoyan will open at the Quirinal Palace under the auspices of the Presidents of the Republic of Armenia and Italy.