An ideal date spot, Bastas offers candlelight and dark corners that make everything look good, including the food. And while most Americans think pasta when they think of Italian food, you'd do best to focus on other things here. The hanger steak was tender and flavorful, with hints of garlic and balsamic vinegar, and served with delicate, crisp potatoes and snow-pea tips. Bite-sized mussels in a saffron butter sauce are the perfect beginning to a meal, just as the unforgettably creamy panna cotta (a sweet sheep's-milk custard) is the ideal conclusion. (MK)