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Nov 24, 2010 04:55 PM

Fresh handmade pasta & other Italian specialties in the Houston area?

Any fresh handmade pasta shops in Houston &/or Italian salumarias w/imported cheeses, curied meats, olive oils, aged balsamics in area? How about Italian pastry shops? Would prefer to pick up here rather than bring from Boston.

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  1. My fave.

    And five minutes from home. (I'm such a lucky dog... err "Hound")!

    Another nearby shop with a slightly different, though smaller selection:

    Our premiere grocer, (if I may be so bold), is

    Lastly, found all over town is

    If you suddenly realize you need German mustard and it's between the hours of 10am and 9pm, Monday through Saturday, try Spec's. There will probably be one within a few miles of you. The mid-town headquarters is a great stop with an extensive gourmet and imported food selection, but any one will have the basics to get you through a meal.

    Enjoy your stay.

    3 Replies
    1. re: DoobieWah

      Tx, DW. We love Phoenicia & are w/in walking distance. Picked up assorted cheeses, olives, prosecco, etc. yesterday for Thanksgiving, but looks like I'll be sending a care package ahead and handcarrying the fresh ravioli and handcut pasta to Houston for Xmas. For Xmas breakfast, bro' picks up panettoni from Phoenicia for French toast we sprinkle w/cardamon & drizzle w/fruit syrup, like homemade blood orange, pomegranate, etc. Happy Holidays to all.

      1. re: DoobieWah

        If you try for food in a Spec's that is in a center with a major food chain e.g. Kroeger you will be sadly disappointed as they don;t carry much food. I guess it's a lease issue.

        1. I wholeheartedly agree with all of the recommendations above for the cheeses, oils, etc. Do make sure you check out the Smith Street Spec's as DW mentioned - it's got the largest selection by far of all Spec's locations. And Central Market may be your best shot for fresh pastas. They are already packaged, so maybe not as uber-fresh as you're used to, but I've found them to be quite good -- they are in the deli section right next to the olives.

          For pastry shops, frankly you may be better served bringing pastries from Boston. Nundini's *might* have some of what you're looking for, but overall my experience is that Houston has better Mexican pastries and Middle Eastern pastries than Italian ones.

          1. I just stumbled on this today:


            There used to be several pasta 'factories' in town, Gianotti's on Bissonnet and there was one in the Village, I think. I just assumed they'd pretty much been wiped out by the ready availability of refrigerated pastas in just about any grocery store.

            1. I'd recommend D'Amico's in Rice Village -- they're a cafe as well as a specialty Italian market. They will have everything but the pastries -- don't recall seeing those anywhere at D'Amico's. You can also have lunch there if you want!

              1 Reply
              1. re: grbroderick

                I second the recommend for D'Amico's in Rice Village for the pasta & specialty Italian items.