Lupo Verde on 14th St. Offering Authentic Southern Italian Food, Focus on Cheese, Charcuterie and House-made Pasta

All things cheese and charcuterie seem to be appearing on more menus across Washington, D.C. At Lupo Verde though, this is no part-time hobby, no mere quick addition to the menu to fulfill an obligation or meet the needs of one of the more popular District dining trends.

No, here, there are approximately 50 cheeses on the menu, the bulk of which have been imported from Italy, in addition to the handful made in-house. There are several different house-made prosciuttos and salamis, and a wide range of other cured meats to choose between, and charcuterie plates are served with a number of spreads and accompaniments .

Speaking of house-made, all of the pasta and breads are made on-site, as is everything else you’ll find on the menu. From the basket of focaccia bread which is your first bite to the gelato you may decide to close your meal with, everything at Lupo Verde is made in their own kitchens and back rooms.

About 70% of the menu is actually available to-go, so once you find your favorite cheeses and meats, you can bring them on home. You can even purchase dried pastas, sauces and breads from the restaurant, and try your hand in the kitchen to see how you are on your own.

In the kitchen at Lupo Verde though is a more experienced and talented hand, chef Domenico Apollaro, who after a career spent working at various stops across Italy was selected by general manager Antonio Matarazzo to run the show here. He turns out a menu filled with authentic southern Italian dishes, including small plates, pasta dishes, meat and seafood entrees, and wood-fired pizza.

There are about 100 wines available by the bottle, and as you might expect, it’s a predominately, although not entirely, Italian selection. Be sure to ask for recommendations and pairings, as you may just get the inside scoop on a bottle which was just sourced on the latest visit back to Italy.

There are also a number of affordable wines by the glass, and an intriguing collection of fresh cocktail concoctions from Francesco Amodeo, who plays on seasonal themes and even incorporates his own limoncello into several of the libations.

The restaurant works with an intimate two-story space, showcasing a bar on each floor which helps to create a lively, bustling atmosphere with several different distinct scenes. Now that the weather has — finally — turned warm, you can also grab an outdoor table.

Lupo Verde is located at 1401 T St. NW, Washington D.C, on the corner of 14th and T. For more information or to make a reservation, call the restaurant at 202.827.4726.

*This article was first published on Yahoo Voices on April 11, 2014