Vino Bistro's "albondigas pomodoro," bison meatballs with tomato sauce and manchego cheese.

A new restaurant has swooped in to replace Lolita Tartine, the Rosemary District restaurant that closed last year. Vino Bistro, the new restaurant, serves a mix of small tapas-like plates, along with an extensive wine list.

Owner Theresa LaSalle moved to the area from Dallas to open the business. It's her first restaurant. She says the former Lolita Tartine space is "perfect" for the new restaurant's food and style, and that one of her goals is to introduce diners to new types of wine.

"Everyone knows California chardonnay, but do people know French chardonnay and Italian chardonnay, and what the differences are?" she says. "We wanted to expand everyone's palate."

LaSalle hired chef Luigi Di'Iorio to develop the menu, which starts with charcuterie and cheese and includes roasted shrimp, chicken sausage, Andalusian deviled eggs, baby sardines and more. She describes the restaurant as a "neighborhood bar" for locals and snowbirds. The restaurant opened in mid-March; LaSalle calls the reception to it so far "great." Add it to your list of new places to check out.

Vino Bistro is located at 1419 Fifth St., Sarasota, and is open 4-9 p.m. Tuesday-Thursday and 4-10 p.m. Friday and Saturday. For more info, call (941) 952-3172 or visit the restaurant's website.

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