Two years ago during a trip to Italy Carla and I had the opportunity to stop in Bologna, home of the oldest university on the European continent (University of Bologna, founded in 1088.) As we wondered through the streets in the oldest section of the city we decided to dine in a small cafe in the Piazza Maggiore. We often try to wonder off the path of the tourist areas but we noticed a number of locals and businessmen were dinning there. Our instincts paid off, we had found real treasure. We feasted on the greatest Lasagna Bolognese we had ever tasted. That changed last week.
A client of ours was here in Houston for a wedding. She was kind enough to set some time aside to meet us for lunch. We decided to meet down town at the Original Carrabba’s. Johnny Carrabba sold his string of Carrabba’s restaurants to Outback Restaurants, but he kept the original two locations in the family. The wait staff was amazing and Mr. Carrabba’s was kind enough to stop by and share his story. He welcomed us with open arms and in true Italian (and Texan) hospitality; he sent a plate of the most delicious calamari to our table. The pasta, breads and the numerous dishes they serve are prepared fresh every day, but putting all of that aside, from the first bite of lasagna I was suddenly transported back to the streets of Bologna.The food, the atmosphere and the company left nothing to be desired. Sometimes we don’t realize, there are treasures we overlook in our own back yard. Get out there an explore!
If you are in Houston, visit: The Original Carrabba’s Italian Grill. 3115 Kirby Drive, Houston TX 77098