Unless you know it's there, you might not notice La Minestra, half a block off Pierre’s main downtown thoroughfare. But behind its nondescript storefront is an upscale Italian eatery with a rich interior, a varied menu of Italian and American favorites, and a good selection of wines.
The chicken tortellini with proscuitto and asparagus ($15) and Mark's Favorite pasta with big chunks of homemade Italian sausage, roasted red peppers and a red sauce ($15) are both huge and plenty tasty. In addition to Italian fare, the menu offers jambalaya and Thai chicken, both served with La Minestra's homemade pasta. And because it’s located in the middle of ranch country, the restaurant tips its cowboy hat to the local clientele with big, beefy steaks and chops.
Owners Mark and Stacey Mancuso have created a common ground where politicians, businessmen and beef-eating ranchers can share the same space and leave happy. La Minestra serves lunch and dinner, and the atmosphere is quiet and a bit dark—in other words, a good place in South Dakota's capital city for politicians and lobbyists to talk legislation over a plate of pasta and a bottle of wine.