Capital Dime serves fancy, affordable dishes


Head bartender Rene Dominguez, formerly of Ella Dining Room & Bar, mixes up his drink the White Linen cocktail.

Kaitlin Bruce

Capital Dime, the newest installation by executive chef Noah Zonca, features a twist on upscale dining in a casual environment.

Opened in July of this year, Zonca, formerly of “The Kitchen,” one of Sacramento’s most elite restaurants, decided to take his skills of high scale cuisine and make them accessible to the general public.

“I had a great job and no reason to leave,” Zonca said. “But I felt I needed to do something bigger. I saw the general concept of Capital Dime and I went all in.”

With entrees such as autumnal salad, steak tagliata and many $10 “Dime Plates”, or starters, to choose from, this place has it all.

Items that stand out are the clams chorizo and steak frites, or steak and fries, that melt in your mouth. The restaurant also has an array of sandwiches that will suit pretty much any diet.

Executive chef Ruben Perez described his favorite dishes.

“Clams chorizo is a delicious dish,” Perez said. “It’s a seafood stocked base sauce with a chorizo twist to give it a little spice. We wanted to give it a southern kick.”

As well as the clams, the dinner plate “Noodles in a Green Dress” caught Perez’s eye.

“Personally, I like pesto and ours is different because it does not have nuts. It’s an antique recipe from Italy,” Perez said.

General manager Chad Gordon said what sets Capital Dime apart amongst the Sacramento restaurant scene is using upscale ingredients for its dishes.

“(Zonca) tried to create a menu that used the same ingredients at the Kitchen and make it affordable for people to eat in a more casual environment,” Gordon said. “The name ‘Capital Dime’ comes from “farm to fork, on a dime.”

With Sacramento being dubbed as the “Farm to Fork Capital of America,” Capital Dime is certainly keeping up with the organization, using only regionally grown ingredients.

“All of our stocks and sauces are put together from scratch,” Gordon said. “We use all local farms to obtain all of our produce, as well as our meats.”

Zonca said he uses ingredients ranging from the farmer’s market in town all the way to the Bay Area.

“We use a lot of farms. My herbs and greens come from Watanabe Farms in West Sacramento, the filets are from Berkeley,” Zonca said.

In addition to everything being made from scratch and in-house, Capital Dime only offers local seasonal ingredients, Gordon said.

“We are always changing up the menu because we have access to all of the seasonal items, so we try and stay on top of the game in that way,” Gordon said. “If it can’t be grown locally, then we won’t use it.”

As for the general atmosphere, Capital Dime boasts a dining room, upper loft and courtyard patio with some Banksy-esque décor including a painting of Audrey Hepburn being mauled by her cat from “Breakfast at Tiffany’s”.

Anthony Shelton, server and manager, said the idea behind the restaurant’s floor plan is to be appealing and welcoming for all customers.

“It’s five-star service for affordable prices,” Shelton said. “The layout is supposed to be inviting, open, and family friendly. There’s a little something for everybody.”

It’s hard not to appreciate the floor length windows, which open up the restaurant to the busy streets of Midtown, and a great view of the beautiful businesses and lofts across the street.

The overall ambience is very calming with modern, upbeat music playing across the restaurant, perpetuating the casual mood.

Shelton explained how bar manager Rene Dominguez plays an integral part in the success of the restaurant with his innovative cocktails.

“None of the alcohol we have here are the same as everyone else’s,” Shelton said. “It’s for the quality, we don’t have common liquors such as Grey Goose and Ciroc [vodka]. These are all for the quality.”

Dominguez is also known for inventing the “White Linen,” cocktail or as the menu calls it, “The O.G. White Linen.” The cocktail consists of Gin, elderflower liqueur, cucumber and lemon juice, making for a refreshing and tasty drink.

Zonca and his innovative team are truly the secret to the restaurants success, as well the quality ingredients, specialty cocktails and an upscale twist on casual atmosphere.

Kaitlin Bruce can be reached at [email protected]