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Dallas Italian Suggestions

We are going to be in Dallas on Feb. 1st and staying at a hotel in the downtown area. Can anyone give me suggestions for an Italian restaurant. Would like a good wine list and something other than just a red sauce/lasagna place. Willing to drive within reason. Thanks for your help.

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    1. No brainer, Arcodoro Pomodoro. www.arcodoro.com

      Brothers that own it are from Sardinia and it's as close to an authentic experience as you're going to have close to downtown. Wine list is solid as well.

      1 Reply
      1. You could try Taverna, on Armstrong Street, just north of downtown, especially is you like risotto, although their woodstone pizza and other Italian fare is also good. http://www.tavernabylombardi.com/. It is more on the casual, neighborhood feel side so if you are looking higher end, I agree Arcodoro Pomodoro is not a bad choice.

        1. Adelmo's is very good. The wine reps all use it as a meeting place as well.

          1. Try Alessio's, you won't be disappointed. Don't be put off by the nabe.


            1 Reply
            1. re: Scagnetti

              second that suggestion for Alessio's

            2. Adelmo's is my # 1 suggestion. Great wine list at reasonable prices and fantastic osso bucco.

                1. re: kelly2

                  Thanks But: How expensive are these places? My gas well hasn't come in yet.

                  1. re: speyerer

                    Amici Signature. It was recommended to me, so I'm recommending it to you. Incredible atmosphere, like dining in an artists loft in NYC. Stunning Italian food. The restaurant is BYOB. Try the Shrimp Carbonara. Unbeliveable!!! The website is www.amicisignature.com and it is located in historic downtown Carrollton. I have a review on my Food Czar blog (December posting) if you are interested.

                2. If you don't mind a 20 minute drive north from downtown, you should try Positano's. Chef Antonio is an Italian trained chef (owner) and has consistent dishes with fresh fish specials daily. The veal ossobuco is fantastic. My favorite is the seafood lasagna that has shrimp, crab, and lobster. Wine selection is good and reasonable. Entres run about $17 to $25. Service is top notch. The location is Preston/Frankford in North Dallas. website: www.positanodallas.com/

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: smokin.joe

                    I disagree w/ Positano. That place is hit or miss. I wouldn't drive that far for the chance of a good meal. I have been there numerous times, since I live nearby, but it is over priced and unpredictable. The wait staff is outstanding however. I now go to Mi Piaci, but too far for you guys.

                  2. Thanks to everyone that replied!! I really appreciate your time and effort. I'll let you all know where we ended up and how it went.
                    Note to Speyerer: hope your wells comes in quick and big. It sure made my mon's day when her's came in last fall. Lot's of fun getting that mail box money!

                    18 Replies
                    1. re: austx03

                      Make the cab ride, or I will drive you guys if you buy dinner lol...to Cosa Nostra 6501 Dalrock Rd, Rowlett, TX..it's a bit of a drive from Downtown..BUT IT IS WORTH IT...im not sure about the wine list I know they have some good ones, my friends drink wine, I dont drink...BUT THE FOOD IS SIMPLY OUTSTANDING..if you think lasagna is cliche..TRY IT HERE you will change your mind..and I don't even like red sauce much...or if you like chicken...and shrimp..you HAVE got to try the Polo Juano (or something like that) has a red pepper cream sauce over pounded chicken breast and grilled shrimp served over fettucine...just OUTSTANDING...and everything is VERY affordable and HUGE portions....

                      1. re: jmellow

                        Please tell me about the quality of the pasta (homemade, egg less, imported etc.), the osso bucco (b/c any Italian restaurant worth going to has it), how their fish is, if they have a full bar and your favorite meal (app., entree dessert) that you have been served there. I am always looking for a good Italian place to go and they are few far between, in my opinion.

                        1. re: yumyum palace

                          my husband and I spent a few weeks in Italy last Spring, and we have not been able to find anything near what we ate there, however yesterday we tried Tarverna and it was fantastic. We had a sampeling of a pasta a risotto, a pizza and a carpaccio, every thing was so good. There were 3 of us and we all brought food home.. It is very reasonable and has a cozy atmosphere. If we want to do something a little more upscale we head out to Plano to Shops of Legacy and go to Nicola's, it is very good but not so authentic

                          1. re: Analisas mom

                            Ever try La Paesana on Lover's Lane? Very good.

                          2. re: yumyum palace

                            homemade pasta, sauce (with the exception sunday gravy) is made to order so your alfredo is TRULY fresh..haven't had the osso bucco...haven't had the fish, im pretty much a Sicilian fan...and this place is heavy on that.

                            1. re: yumyum palace

                              I don't agree about osso bucco. There are some very good Italian restaurants that do not serve it. Taverna for one. They have been and wine only. Excellent pasta but no clue if it's made in house. The owner has owned Italian restaurants in Dallas for a good 30 years or so and I would say it's probably in house. The pizza is definitely all house made. The pizza is great and very reasonably priced. They have daily risotto, pasta, fish, meat, soup, and pizza specials.

                              Adelmo's has fabulous osso bucco.

                              1. re: dalaimama

                                Thanks guys. I will look in to going to Taverna w/ my husband.

                                1. re: yumyum palace

                                  I;ve lived here 17 years, been to Italy several times and love Taverna. However, last week I went to a little place that opened up in Highland Park called Nonna (across the street from Whole Foods on Lomo Alto and Lemmon) and had the best italian food I've eaten in this city. It's tiny, it has no website, the chef has experience from Olivetto Cafe (Alice Waters Chez Panisse spin off) and spent several years in Italy perfecting his pasta making skills. Everything is made in house and sustainable. Wine list is amazingly affordable. My wife and I had braised lamb shank with cannelini beans ($32), house made fettucine with pancetta and thyme ($17), vanilla panna cotta ($8) and a bottle of italian red as recommended by the bartender ($34). I'm counting the hours til we get to back here.

                                  1. re: skedhead2000

                                    I haven't been to Nonna yet, but hope to try it the next time I'm in town. On small correction. Oliveto has no formal Alice Waters connection. It's original chef and owner, Paul Bertolli was a chef at Chez Panisse for a number of years, but to my knowledge Alice never had a formal role at Oliveto, although I understand she's still a big fan of Pauls. And if Nonna is half as good as Oliveto, it will be the best Italian restaurant in Texas by a factor of ten. The food at Oliveto is stunningly good, simple, and fresh.

                                    1. re: Mike C. Miller

                                      I haven't been to Nonna but very much want to. And, while I generally agree with Mike Miller's posts, I have a small problem with his opinion, generally, of Texas Italian restaurants. I think that Da Marco in Houston is pretty amazing. For me, it is far and away the best Italian restaurant in Texas and holds up to many of the best in the country.

                                      1. re: bhoward

                                        Nonna is my favorite Italian outside of Italy.

                                2. re: dalaimama

                                  I meant beer and wine NOT "been" and wine - Whoops!

                                  1. re: dalaimama

                                    While good Osso Bucco is kind of an art, it is peasant food. It also takes quite a bit of cook time. There are many restaurants that just don't want to mess with it. The best and one of the more reasonable in town was Paparazzi before they closed. It's the secret of how to turn veal shoulder, or for that matter just beef shoulder into something great! I am personally rather fond of Lamb Shank Osso Bucco, which I make on a regular basis.

                                    1. re: dalaimama

                                      After viewing their menu it appears that they don't have any veal dishes. It kind of looks like Italian/American more than Italian. Would you say that is an accurate assessment? Also it looks fussy and limited. What do you like at taverna?

                                      1. re: yumyum palace

                                        I personally go to Taverna mostly for the pizza. It's actually the closest thing to real Italian that you would eat in Italy. Again goes back to real Italian pizza is not smothered in cheese but rather thin and lightly dressed.

                                        I also enjoy their risotto with balsamic reduction.

                                        Taverna does a good job of fresh ingredients and minimal preparations, basically the definition of good Italian.

                                        1. re: yumyum palace

                                          I would say the menu is focused rather than limited ;> I find it pretty similar to the food I had in Italy. Pasta tend not to be swimming in sauce, pizza is great, risotto is excellent. There are specials for meat, fish, pasta, risotto, soup, and pizza every day - that extends the menu.

                                          The Taverna focaccia is downright additive.

                                          They have a nice wine list - not huge, but some good choices at reasonable prices. Wines by the glass are served in a small carafe, so while they may be $9, you get a very nice-sized pour.

                                          I don't particularly care for their house salad. It's just salad. However, they have a caesar as a special fairly frequently and it is very good (and enough for two).

                                          From your discussion, I think Adelmo's might be more in your ballpark. They have more in the way of meats and seafood entrees (and excellent osso bucco). Adelmo loves veal. It's in the same area as Taverna, but has less of a "scene" about it and has a fairly serious wine list.

                                          1. re: dalaimama

                                            The menu at Adelmo's looks worth trying one evning.
                                            Taverna sounds like a great pizza and wine spot. Thanks for that too. I dig on Campania's pizza which do you prefer?

                                            1. re: yumyum palace

                                              Angelos's in Lakewood is very good.