Spaghetti and garlic rolls and meatballs and accordion music and drippy candles atop Chianti bottles are not simply beloved staples of a classic Italian restaurant, but also of pop culture itself.
From "The Godfather" to "Big Night" to "Dinner Rush" to music (think of Billy Joel's "Scenes from an Italian Restaurant"), the experience has been immortalized time and again, making the experience of such a meal something well enshrined in our shared storytelling history.
"Lady and the Tramp," too, has a checkered tablecloth moment, when the two titular characters famously share a plate of spaghetti and a momentary surprise kiss. In honor of that meatball-yummy, napkin-nice moment, El Capitan Theatre in Hollywood is screening the 1955 Disney animated classic, and pairing it with a deal at a little tucked-away landmark just around the road.
Well, there's nothing too little about Miceli's stature around Southern California: It's known as the oldest Italian restaurant in Hollywood, a place to hear some magnificent live arias sung, and the spot to see all of those famous Chianti bottles hanging from the ceiling.
Oh yeah, and Marilyn Monroe and Joe DiMaggio dated there, too.
As for the El Capitan-Miceli's pair-up? It's happening over Valentine's Weekend -- Feb. 12 through 15 -- and diners who book it shall sup it up at a candlelight dinner pre-movie. "Sup it up" indeed means spaghetti, meatballs, those luscious old-school Miceli's rolls, and mini cannoli are on the menu. And if meatballs aren't your pleasure, marinara is the savory and meat-free substitute.
It's called the Celebrate Your Valentine package, and you must put your pawprint on this one well in advance. "Put your pawprint" indeed means that you need to make reservations.
Miceli's has been making traditional tastes a Tinseltown thing since before "Lady and the Tramp" premiered; a half decade before, in fact, so one does wonder if those animators made their way down from Burbank to grab some pasta and rolls for lunch and talk about a certain group of soon-to-be celebrated dogs.