LOCAL Houston | The City Guide MAY 2015 - Page 26

Local May_Final.qxp_002houston 4/23/15 12:19 PM Page 26 GOOD EATS NORTH ITALIA CHEF BOARDS $$$ Italian ,Pizza, Wine Bar | 1700 Post Oak 281.605.4030 | www.northitaliarestaurant.com North Italia recently opened in BLVD Place on Post Oak, behind the new Whole Foods that opened a few months ago. The chic space serves traditional Italian fare led by Executive Chef Taylor Domet, including made from scratch pizzas and pastas with an emphasis on fresh, locally sourced ingredients along with a nice selection of seafood dishes. Don’t miss the Bolognese pasta or the Patata Pizza with Italian bacon, potatoes and a farm egg along with fantastic craft cocktails and a great wine list. –Jodie Eisenhardt ARCODORO $$$ Italian | 5000 Westheimer | 713.621.6888 www.arcodoro.com The restaurant – co-owned by Efisio Farris with wife Lori – has become a fixture in the Galleria area since opening in 1996. Highlights include the seafood options, particularly the whole fish (branzino, gulf red snapper or sea bream) encrusted in rock salt and cooked in the wood-burning oven and filleted tableside. The same oven puts out some great pizza. –Jodie Eisenhardt ARTURO BOADA CUISINE $$$ Spanish Italian | 6510 Del Monte | 713.568.9196 www.boadacuisine.com Chef/Owner Arturo Boada’s neighborhood outpost on Del Monte is turning out delectable cuisine from a spotless kitchen, reflecting the chef’s devotion to the freshest ingredients and high standards of preparing them. Menu options include Spanish tapas like the “pappas bravas” with spicy red potatoes and Spanish chorizo, super-fresh seafood, pizzas from a wood-burning oven and melt-in-your-mouth house-made pastas like “Mama Sonia’s ravioli” stuffed with chicken and porcini mushrooms in a white wine cream sauce topped with jumbo lump crab. –Jodie Eisenhardt BCN TASTE AND TRADITION $$$$ European, Spanish | 4210 Roseland St. | 832.834.3411 www.bcnhouston.com The vibe is traditional meets modern. Many of the ingredients and even some equipment have been sourced directly from Spain, including the mouthwatering Iberico Ham which is served with slices of bread rubbed 26 L O C A L | may 15 with raw tomato for a rustic and satisfying dish. Other appetizer highlights include a lovely watermelon and burrata salad with baby greens, basil leaves and vinegar reduction. –Jodie Eisenhardt BIG EYED FISH $$ Southern American Comfort | 908 Henderson | 713.714.8367 www.bigeyedfishhouston.com Everything is made fresh in-house. Yummy crab beignets sit atop a bed of dressed greens and a tangy/sweet tomato jam that’s so good they sell jars of it at the bar. Other hits include the fried green tomatoes, bacon-filled deviled eggs, and the shrimp and grits. The meatloaf has a spicy kick, and we loved the pan-roasted quail with its fantastic mushroom bread pudding. The bar has a solid beer and wine selection (and retail), and the express lunch offers downtowners a tasty new option. –Jodie Eisenhardt CARACOL $$$$ Mexican Coastal Seafood | 220 Post Oak Blvd. 713.622.9996 | www.caracol.net I ordered the Gran Especial margarita, Gusanos and Tostado de Atun Crudo. The Gran Especial margarita had a nice “bite” from the tamarind and the roasted spiced simple syrup, quite the choice for the chilly Houston night that I visited. The Gusanos, which may shock some, are sautéed, dried maguey worms. Once you get over the intial shock factor that you’re eating worms, you’ll really enjoy this dish. Served taco style, I found this dish to be best when drizzled with the lime and topped with salsa. The Tostada de Atun Crudo was very fresh and topped with a sour orange mayonnaise. –Dominique McGhee COOK & COLLINS $$$ American | 2416 Brazos St. Suite C | 832.701.1973 www.cookandcollins.com From the kitchen, Chef Josh Shobe’s American menu offers a large selection of appetizers to share – gourmet flatbreads, loaded potato smashers, buffalo chili fries, oysters rockefeller fondue and more – along with a selection of burgers, entrées, salads, sides and desserts. I had the steak frites (ribeye steak and fries served with truffle mayo) – a favorite, along with a free-range fried chicken served with garlic mashed potatoes, braised greens and honey jar. For dessert, the butterscotch pudding, served in a canning jar with oatmeal cookies, was sweet, but definitely worth the calorie splurge. –Mai Pham DAVIS ST. AT HERMANN PARK $$$ Fusion, International, Modern | 5925 Alme H