Bite into Italian eats at Fort Lauderdale's Mancini Modern

Jack Mancini has reincarnated his namesake restaurant not far from the original he ran for nine years. He created a contemporary Italian menu with executive chef Claudio Sandri including crudo, antipasti, pizza, pasta and secondi that are artfully composed. There’s also mozzarella pulled at tableside and served with heirloom tomatoes and pesto.

The Italian-Irish developer grew up in Detroit and dreamed of becoming a pro golfer, playing on the Broward Community College team. He ended up in construction like his father, who was born in Supino, a town 30 miles south of Rome where he visited relatives on a recent trip that inspired the menu at Mancini Modern Italian. Mancini shuttered his old eatery last year when the building was sold. The new place on Fourth Avenue has wood beams overhead, white marble counters and a wood-burning oven.

Crudo is an Italian raw seafood tradition similar to sashimi but anointed with olive oil and citrus. Try tuna with capers and fennel in lemon-ginger vinaigrette, red snapper with citrus segments, basil oil and spicy lime juice or scallop discs with celery and black lava salt in blood orange dressing.

Garganelli is ridged egg-pasta quills in creamy taleggio cheese sauce with porcini, house-made fennel sausage and pancetta. Mezzalune are crescent-shaped ravioli stuffed with lobster, tarragon and shallots.

Braised osso buco (veal shank) comes on saffron risotto in tomato ragu, while pan-seared salmon is plated with lemon zest gremolata and fennel puree. Sides include roasted cauliflower florets and beet and goat cheese salad with walnuts. Berry panna cotta confirms the la dolce vita.