March 31, 2015

Hot Dish

Inside the Gulfshore's Dining Scene


Hot Dish: July 15, 2009

Inside the Gulfshore’s Dining Scene.   Popular Two Brothers Relocates to Naples   Two Brothers Baci Italian Restaurant is one of the best in Southwest Florida. Formerly known as AA Two Brothers Pizzeria & Italian Cuisine, it was named a Gulfshore Life Best of the Gulfshore Best-Kept Secret in 2008 before relocating from Bay Crossings in Bonita Springs and tweaking its name. Two Brothers specializes in fresh Brooklyn-style cuisine—even the sauces are made on the spot. This is a warm, friendly neighborhood treasure, with brothers Bob and Sal Lanzieri always on site.  Two Brothers Baci Italian Restaurant owners Bob and Sal Lanzieri   The food is very, very good! My favorites are the zuppa di pesce ($24) with lots of fresh, tender shrimp, mussels, clams and calamari...

Posted at 04:17 PM | Permalink


Hot Dish: July 8, 2009

Inside the Gulfshore’s Dining Scene.   Beat the Heat with Great Meal Deals   Many restaurants are feeling the pinch of the typical slower summer mixed with a tight economy. Owners are reluctant to share figures, but the general buzz is this past season was down 15 to 25 percent. What’s bad news for them is good news for diners in search of a great deal, as many restaurants are offering big discounts on food and drink to lure new customers, maintain regulars and keep servers’ tips up. I could fill this column for months just listing specials such as Naples Originals’ 30 percent discounts at more than 35 locally owned restaurants ( And check out some of the other great deals I found along the Gulfshore:   —Naples’ Miramare, with one of...

Posted at 03:20 PM | Permalink


Hot Dish: June 24, 2009

Inside the Gulfshore’s Dining Scene.   Watch the Flames at Mercato’s Piola   Piola, at Naples’ Mercato, is literally the hottest new kid in town. Just east of AZN and The Pub, the Italian restaurant with a warm, contemporary décor is a great place to go for delicious, authentic pizza, pastas, beef or fish. Nearly all dishes are between $9 and $19—and you can see the flames of the blazing brick oven where the thin-crust pizzas are fired for two minutes.   Como pizza at Piola in Naples. My Como pizza’s paper-thin, rich Parma ham and luscious porcini mushrooms sat atop a light tomato sauce and mozzarella base. It was light and delicate, with surprisingly fresh bold accents. Two or three can share this, or dozens of other pizzas, for $11 to $16. Open 5 p.m. to...

Posted at 03:18 PM | Permalink


Hot Dish: June 10, 2009

Inside the Gulfshore’s Dining Scene.   French Bakery Gets New Owners—and Rave Review   I can only rave about the French Bread Oven! Baker/co-owner Andre Gratesol and co-owners Eric and Tomasina Truglas bought the bakery two months ago, and the difference is amazing. I’m not usually a dessert person, but after a few tastes, I went home with a dozen different breads and pastries to, ahem, share with friends. Really! One French friend’s eyes lit up as she named some of the goodies. “There’s a Tropezienne, and that’s an éclair vanille like they make in Paris. This is a claufouti—a sort of custard with fruit, and that Mille feuille [Napoleon] is now mine—so there!” French Bread Oven Sales Manger Paul McDermott with co-owners Tomasina and Eric Truglas.  ...

Posted at 03:44 PM | Permalink


Hot Dish: June 3, 2009

Inside the Gulfshore’s Dining Scene.   Naples Loses Ruth’s Chris Fine Dining   Ruth’s Chris Steak House at Naples’ Coastland Center mall just closed after barely two years in business. I dined there with friends twice last month. Each visit, there were at most only 10 other diners present from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. in a restaurant that can seat 250. The quality of food and service were very good, and I took home an extra bread pudding! Full dinners can easily cost more than $100 per person. Neighbors Kona Grill and Ruby Tuesday both closed last year. However, VIVI, which opened just a month ago on Ruth’s Chris south side, flourishes with entrée prices half that of the steakhouse.   Ruth’s Chris Web site states: “Thank you for your loyalty and patronage to our...

Posted at 03:53 PM | Permalink

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