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Texas Corpus Christi

Corpus Christi report-long (Victoria too)


Restaurants & Bars 3

Corpus Christi report-long (Victoria too)

Zorra | Jul 18, 2004 07:34 PM

Well, there's lots of good food in Corpus:
Thursday night: Italian at Mamma Mia's, downtown on Mesquite Street; there's no signage visible from Mesquite, but it's a freestanding yellowish building with cases of beer in the front window! This place was a hoot. We were seated in nonsmoking, at which point the gentleman next to us promptly lit his pipe. I quietly asked the waiter whether this wasn't the nonsmoking section, and he said, "Oh, that's the owner...he'll move in a few minutes." Meanwhile the owner had reached over and, with a friendly comment, grabbed my husband's menu to make a point about salmon to someone at his table (a fish supplier, perhaps?). Then he moved. OK. Lots of pastas, veal, etc., of course; a little pricy for "neighborhood Italian" ($25.75 for the veal dishes), and they take no credit cards. Well, people, the alfredo sauce was the standard by which I will judge all alfredo in the future. The waiter denied that it was made with heavy cream, but it tasted like it. Our other pasta dish, with shrimp and mushrooms in a lighter "pink cream" sauce, was excellent too. Warning, women: the owner kisses his female patrons as they leave, so stand back if you aren't amused.

Friday after the beach: fried seafood on the pier at Snoopy's, with Blue Bell available at Scoopy's next door. Go.

Saturday night: Lavender. A very stylish small restaurant. The young chef, Christopher Aeby, is a local boy who trained in San Francisco. Lots of interesting first courses; my husband liked his ahi tartare, and I had a very fresh-tasting corn bisque with fava beans and morels. They also brought us a complementary taste of a lobster and potato bisque, which was very light. Entrees were fairly evenly divided between seafood and meat, with duck breast being the only poultry entree. We enjoyed Niman Ranch pork loin with a morel stuffing, and roasted black drum with corn and arugula in a Chardonnay reduction. We split a fabulous berry cobbler with a nice shortbready crust, and then they brought a complementary selection of beautiful little candies and cookies. I don't know who their pastry chef is, but he/she is quite talented. Service was courteous, prompt, and rather formal. All of this, with two glasses of wine, came to $107. I can't imagine having a comparable meal in Houston or Dallas for less than $175.

If you are traveling through Victoria, stop for lunch on N. Navarro at Toscano. We enjoyed very well-prepared panini-like grilled sandwiches (mine with chicken breast, spinach, mushrooms, mozarrella, and basil pesto), and lovely soups (crab alfredo! mmm).

Thanks very much to TexNosh and his Corpus friend who provided these wonderful recommendations. Tomorrow it's back to weight training, aerobics, and a few days of 1200 calories....

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