74 GoodLifeFamilyMag.com MARCH | APRIL 2019 Russo’sCoal-FiredItalianKitchen This Houston-based eatery does offer a well-rounded menu, including Arancini (delectable Sicilian rice balls loaded with herbs and Romano cheese in a rich Bolognese sauce), fantastic Calzones, and standard Italian entrées (Chicken Piccata and the like). That said, the real draw to Russo’s isthepizza,thankstoitsnearly1,000-degreecoal-firedoven,whichgives us that chewy, but crispy, crust we love. Try the Prosciutto and Kale with Mozzarella and Ricotta cheese. Feeling carnivorous?The Paesano Napola- tana will leave you feeling sated. Russo’s is family-friendly, and they cater tobothbigandsmallparties. 700E.CampbellRd.|Richardson (972)235-7992 www.russoscoalfired.com Mediterranean MamaPitaMediterraneanGrill If you’re looking for affordable and delicious Mediterranean food, Mama Pita is waiting for you. Easily customizable plates, salads and pitas allow you to pick and choose whatever sides you crave, from light and crispy falafel and flatbread to creamy hummus and tzatziki. Kafta (beef kabobs) are tender and delicious—perfect for dipping in one of several garlicky sauces(trytheyellowtahini/carrotdip).Counterserviceisfastandfriend- ly,andtheopenandairyatmospheremakesitaniceplacefordining-in.Or, ifyouprefer,orderonlineaheadoftimeandtake‘erhome. 5800LegacyDr.,Ste.C6|Plano (972)403-1609 www.mamapita.com Mexican CasaMama Ifyou’relookingforafamily-friendlydininglocationofferingbothauthen- tic Mexican recipes (specifically, from the Santiago Maravatio Guanajuato region) andTex-Mex favorites, Casa Mama is the right place for you.You’ll findallyourfavoriteMexicandisheshereandafewpleasantsurprises,too, includingrichandfillingGuisoPorkStew,homeyTortillaLasagna,Chipotle Enchiladas, and Ribeye or Salmon Tacos. White Queso is one of the best around, served with light, crispy chips—take it up a notch by adding in ground beef, chorizo or brisket. House made salsa is unique and comes withafreekick.Serviceisknownforbeingexceptionallyfriendly,andstaff ishappytoaccommodateanyspecialorders. 19129PrestonRd.|Dallas (469)828-1045 www.casamamas.com Chuys What started in Austin in 1982 as fun/funky Tex-Mex joint—where you could grab a beer and chips or a comforting mix of familiar entrees, has since grown into what you might call a Tex-Mex empire, with locations across Texas and 14 other states. Still, Chuy’s hasn’t lost its charm. And a lot of love goes intoChuy’sfood—fromhand-pulledchickeninallentrees,tohand-rolled fresh tortillas, to any of the 10 signature sauces made fresh daily—those extra steps really make a di erence in both taste and quality. If your appe- tite’s cavernous, you’ll de nitely want to try a “Big As Yo’Face”Burrito or famousElvisGreenChileFriedChickenbread-edwithLay’spo-tatochips, deep fried and smothered with green chile sauce and cheese. A small but refreshingselectionofsignaturedrinksstillmakesChuy’saperfectplaceto kickback—anytime,anyplace. MultiplelocationsthroughoutDFW Gloria’sLatinCuisine New Listing For three-plus de- cades in the Metroplex, Gloria’s (under the loving care of the Fuen- tes family) has established itself as a date night and family favorite, offering the freshest Salvador- ian-inspired food in a casual-chic setting. Start off with an order of pupusas—the dish that“started it all”—handmade corn tortillas stuffed with gooey cheese, pork or both. Chile Relleno is tender and flavorful, and you can’t go wrong with any of the seafood specialties such as Camarones a la Plancha (jumbo seasoned shrimp, grilled to perfection). Don’t worry, Tex-Mex fans, there’s also a section on the menu for you! Some locations convert to dance clubs after hoursonweekends,andbrunchatGloria’sisalwaysfun. MultiplelocationsthroughoutDFW www.gloriascuisine.com Hugo’sInvitadosNewListing Asleekinteriorandnaturallighting provideagorgeous,relaxedsetting for the real reason we love Hugo’s, which is the food. Friendly owner Hugo Miranda ensures his passion for Mexican flavors is presented in a unique way on every plate. Everything’s fresh and made from scratch, with an emphasis on deli- cious,healthyingredientssuchaskale,quinoa,Brusselssprouts,androast- ed corn. Seafood Enchiladas are bursting with five types of seafood and contrast nicely with pickled cabbage and chile ancho salsa. Simple tacos are not so simple when served on house-made tortillas and stuffed with ingredients such as vegetarian impossible meat (try it!), watercress, and avocado-serrano sauce. Book the Tasting Table with nine of your friends to enjoy world-class tequilas and mezcals, or stop by for daily happy hour specials.“Invitados”meansguests,andyou’llbemorethanwelcomehere. 5240N.O'ConnorBlvd.,Ste.160|Irving (214)496-0590 www.hugosinvitados.com HulaHut Located on beautiful Lake Lewis- ville, a visit to Hula Hut feels a lot like a mini beach vacation: think tiki torches, bamboo huts, grass- thatchedbarsandhangingcolored lightsgalore.Mexonisian-stylecui- sine (i.e. traditional Tex-Mex with a Polynesian twist) means that there’s something for everyone, should you choose to bring a group.While you and your significant other are kicking back with a fishbowl-sized Hu-La-La signature cocktail made fortwowiththreedifferenttypesofrum(hello,Uber!),noshonsomePalm TreeHuggerNachosloadedwithcheeseandothergoodies.Thereareplen- ty of options for vegetarians, and Fajitas and Tubular Tacos are intensely satisfyingaswell. 210E.EldoradoPkwy.|LittleElm (214)618-4852 www.hulahutlittleelm.com MexicanBarCompany This open dining concept where dining room meets bar, patio and lounge area features vibrant origi- nalmuralsandalivelyatmosphere. Start with a mix-and-match of the unique guacamoles and hop right into the “Born in Texas” tacos on freshly made tortillas (the pancita/ pork belly is fantastic). You’ll find allyourotherfavorites,too,includingspicychorizoflautas,enchiladasand several options if you’re feeling seafood-y. Nice cocktail menu (don’t miss the“BigNose”onfire)includingagoodselectionoftequilas. 6121W.ParkBlvd.,Ste.RS-10|Plano (972)972-4466 www.mexbars.com UrbanRioCantina&Grill AstheyoungersisterrestaurantofdowntownPlano’spopularUrbanCrust, UrbanRioopenedwithhighexpectations—anddoesn’tdisappoint.Torti- llas and tamales are made with hand-ground masa, and even the bolillo rolls for the tortas (sandwiches) are made in-house. Start with either Fried Guacamole Bites or a rich bowl of the Rio Queso with or without chorizo-stylebeef.Quesadillasareasignaturedish,serveddouble-stacked “club style” and stuffed with house-smoked brisket, Chimichurri grilled chicken or sautéed veggies. Cocktails are refreshingly unique, and the open-airbarisagreatplacetoenjoylivemusicandalovelyviewofhistoric Plano. 1000E.14thSt.,Ste.100|Plano (972)422-4466 www.urbanrio.com VelvetTaco When it comes to Texas cuisine, tacos are tops (along, of course, with barbecue) and in Dallas, Velvet Taco is a favorite.“Multi-cultural ingredi- ents”allow diners to experience a little bit of Mexico, India, Cuba, Japan and more—all wrapped in a house made tortilla. Start with the Red Curry Coconut Queso with pickled onion,Thai basil and crispy blue tortilla chips—it’s sublime. Then go straight into what you came for: tacos. Se- riously, they’re all good, but stand-outs include Annatto Shredded Pork with grilled pineapple on a hibiscus tortilla and Fried Paneer with tomato chutneyandtikkasauce. MultiplelocationsthroughoutDFW www.velvettaco.com Seafood Fish&FizzNewListing In 2018, Nick and Kelli Barclay opened this little gem of a fine-ca- sual fish and chip shop as a way to bring “a bit of seaside to the city, without the seagulls,” and many say it’s the most authentic English fare around. Responsibly-sourced cod is perfectly battered and fried, served atop fat chips on a news- paper-lined tray, and you’ll find allthetraditionalEnglishtrimmingssuchascurrysauce,mushypeas,and malt vinegar. Other Brit favorites include bangers and mash, flaky Cornish pasties, and bubble and squeak.The“fizz”part includes a lovely selection of adult bubblies (bruts, rosés, proseccos) and both local and European beers,pairingperfectlywiththefish. 400N.CoitRd.,Ste.1908|Richardson (469)687-0022 www.fishandfizz.com Lefty’sLobsterand ChowderHouse Long considered a neighborhood gem, Lefty’s serves the kind of seafood you’d expect to find some- where on the East Coast: clam chowder, lobster bisque (Can’t decide between the two? Ask for half and half), whole main lobster (Lefty’s uses cull lobsters that have one claw—hence, the name) and fried shrimp. Hearty salads are made heartier with the addition of chicken, salmon, shrimp or lobster—and if you’re simply not feeling fishy, go for a perfectly cooked filet mignon or burger. Lefty’s numerous accolades speak for themselves, and it gets a lot of regulars, especially on weekends—so be sure to make a reservation online.Openforlunchanddinner,andthebarstaysopenlate. 4021BeltLineRd.|Dallas (972)774-9518 www.leftyslobster.com SeaBreezeFishMarket&Grill FindingtrulyfreshfishinDallascanbechallenging,butSeaBreezemakes it sooo easy. Selections are flown in daily, representing only the freshest seafoodavailable.Partretailfishmarket,partsit-downrestaurantwithfull bar, at Sea Breeze you can purchase fish to prepare in your own home...or let the experts do it for you while enjoying a glass of wine or cocktail. Be suretostartoutwiththeSesameCrustedYellowfinTunaNachoswithavo- cado wasabi, sweetThai chili, and lemon zest—or maybe you're more of aSmokedSalmonDeviledEggperson;youcan'tgowrongwitheitherone. TheLobsterRollisatopseller,itstraditionalsplit-topbunfilledgenerously with buttery lobster salad.There's a nice selection of soups and stews, in- cluding a stellar cioppino, and gumbo that will remind you of your Cajun granny(ifyouhaveone). 4017PrestonRd.,Ste.530|Plano (972)473-2722 www.seabreezefish.com SeaBreezeLobsta&ChowdaHouse Forthepastdecade,theOruchfamilyhasbroughtNorthTexansthefresh- estseafoodselectionintheregionattheiracclaimedSeaBreezeFishMar- ket & Grill.  The menu at this newer restaurant showcases a limited menu of specialty items including the New England Lobster Roll—a simple sandwich of wild-caught Maine lobster simply dressed with mayonnaise, celery and tarragon on a buttered bun brought in from New England. We goodEATS