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29 May 2010 @ 09:33 pm
New? Italian place in Waco  
There used to be a Mr. Gatti's down by MCC, but it's long gone. I think it was a different kind of pizza place for a while, too. But now, it's Portofino's! And it's awesome.
It's a small, family owned restaurant, and I want to share the love. Locals should definitely go try it out. We were in the mood for Italian, but you just don't have a lot of options here. You can wait in line for 30-60 min to get into the Olive Garden, or you can go to Johnny Carino's, or you can go to Baris. We sometimes wait at the Olive Garden, we never go to Carino's, and I have trouble getting Matt to go to Baris for some reason, despite the fact they catered our groom's dinner when we got married :P

So a new place is exciting! And it was good!
Everything was about 10 bucks a plate, and since it's a new family business, there wasn't a wait at all XD I like not having to wait, but the place is good enough that it's going to become our regular Italian place. I want more people to go so that they do well and stick around! I tried the pasta sampler, which included a small piece of ground beef lasagna (it was ok, but seemed a little bland. Everything is better with seasoned ricotta cheese!), a spinach canelloni thing (yum! Large spinach leaves cooked into it, rolled together with some ricotta in a pasta shell), and best of all, the manicotti! The manicotti was pure awesome. I wished I'd ordered a plate of that after trying everything. They also do pizza, your typical Italian-place appetizers and desserts, etc. Surprisingly, they had a lot of veal recipies on the menu! I was drawn to it immediately, but I'm always a little bit afraid that the veal will be tough. I figured a pasta sampler would be a great way to get to know the taste of the restaurant.

We also brought some dessert home to try later. We're pretty much set on coming back here again another day, but the tiramisu is the deciding factor! If it's awesome, I'll never have another reason to go back to the Olive Garden :P

So yeah.. Wacoans, go to Portofino's, so it doesn't close!

Edit: I don't use twitter, but I feel I should mention...

Portofinowaco is the name they use on twitter. They don't update consistantly, but it seems like the plan was to announce the special of the day every day in twitter, which I think is a fabulous idea! The fact that they had the foresight to sign up is pretty amazing, to say the least. They have a basic website that has the full menu on it, too, which is the main reason I chose them for dinner tonight :X I wanted that manicotti! http://www.portofinowaco.com/
Current Mood: fullfull
Voodoo Ornamentalistpunkhead5150 on May 30th, 2010 04:54 am (UTC)
It makes me sad that for italian, there's a long wait for olive garden
HIDE your facekyonomiko on May 30th, 2010 02:19 pm (UTC)
It's hard for new local businesses to get established here. Once they do, they're good.. but if you are new, it's hard as hell. That means we basically have a handful of a few really successful and popular mom& pop places, and everything else are all chains. Being Texas, BBQ, Steak, and Mexican are really popular. People like Italian, they really do, but there arn't a lot of people who know how to make it well. So.. Olive Garden! I always thought Carino's pasta wasn't bad. The spaghetti wasn't every over-cooked and mushy the times I'd gone. But I just wasn't wowed by everything else they did. Baris is pretty good, and really cheap, so they're great. But yeah.

Baris is a well-established local chain, so I'm not entirely sure there's enough room locally for another family-owned Italian place. I really hope Portofino's does well, though.