Carrabba’s Italian restaurant has a backbone of traditional family recipe handed down from Grace (and not in the literal sense) as the owner’s mother to one and grandmother to another; who learned how to cook from her mother and mother in law Margaret Mandola when they immigrated from Sicily. The recipes have a mix of old traditional Italian and the new world and tried to keep it that way for generations.
The nice thing about Carrabba’s is that when you come in you feel the atmosphere as if you are dining with a large Italian extended family, the décor is simple yet elegantly crisp, however the prices of the place tend to be more on the higher side, if you can’t afford it, this is not an every day dinner.
The location in the city of Houston is central at 3115 Kirby and the hours of operations are Monday and Friday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Tuesday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday from 12 p.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday from 12 p.m. to 10 p.m.
From their appetizers and soups and salads selection go with the cozze in bianco which are mussels steamed in white wine, olive oil, garlic and herbs for $14, or the lentil and sausage soup for $8 which is great for colder months or the insalata fiorucci which includes greens tossed with marinated artichoke hearts, roasted peppers, grilled eggplant and a hazelnut goat cheese for $11.
For their specialty section if you want pasta go with the pasta “Carrabba” which are fettuccine with a white creamy sauce with chicken, mushrooms and peas for $17, or try the chicken “Bryan Texas” which comes topped with goat cheese, sundried tomatoes and basil butter for $18, or if you love seafood then you must get the spiedino di mare which breaded shrimp and sea scallops grilled and topped with a lemon butter sauce for $20.
With your meal you can also order a cocktail such as the Carrabbarita which is a frozen margarita with Amaretto di Saronno, or the Carrabellini which comes with peach puree, peach schnapps and champagne for $11, or even an espresso martini which is espresso combined with Vodka, Kahlua and a shot of Frangelico for $12.
But do not forget dessert, where the prices are more reasonable, like the dessert Rosa which is butter cake topped with pastry cream, bananas, strawberries, pineapple, and whipped cream, or the sogni di cioccolata (chocolate dream) which is a rich fudge brownie, brushed with Kahlua, and crowned with chocolate mousse or even the classical tiramisu for $7.