Maybe it’s cliché, but when I think of traditional Italian food, bottles of wine lining the wall, red and white checkered table clothes, heaping portions of pasta, candlelight, and brick ovens all come to mind. To fully live up to this image of perfect Italian, D’Amico’s Italian Market Café in Houston provides all that and more at prices that are great and in a location that can’t be beat.

The Lunch Special

The lunch special at D’Amico’s is just one of the unique and awesome features of the establishment that sets it apart from other Italian restaurants in Houston. For under $10, a guest at D’Amico’s can get a good-sized portion of pasta and a salad, both of which are delish. When you’re dining in the afternoon, try the Caesar salad and the pancetta tortellini, which are fabulous. Keep in mind, the lunch special menu changes daily, so while you might be delighted by the meat lasagna on Monday, don’t expect to find it alongside Friday’s roasted chicken. Lunch specials are served from 11 AM to 2 PM Monday through Friday. For $8.95, you can choose any three items. Amazing.

A Deli and Market, too

In addition to the restaurant, D’Amico’s also has a great Italian market and deli as well. So, after you have your meal, if you feel like browsing the store for some fine Italian wines, olive oils, or pastas, you won’t be disappointed, and might want to try to bring D’Amico’s to your own kitchen.

Italian Desserts

If you like sweets, you’ll love the desserts at D’Amico’s. Favorites are the carrot cake, Italian cream cake, and cheesecake. If you like tiramisu, the version here is pretty top notch.

Cozy and Romantic

If you’re looking for a romantic date location that is cozy and will ignite feelings of love within you and your partner, D’Amico’s is the place. It’s not expensive, it’s not too fancy, but it’s quaint and charming enough to be considered adequately lovely for an amorous evening. Plus, they validate parking, so you’ll save some money there.

Just Snacking

If you’ve been dying to see just how cute D’Amico’s really is but aren’t hungry enough for a full meal, feel free to attend for a coffee and snack. Order an espresso while indulging in the fig, biscotti, or sesame cookies. The cookies are only 50 cents apiece, and are fully worth every penny. Plus, they have free Wi-Fi, so you’re welcome to bring your laptop and just hang out for a bit.

Outdoor Seating

Finally, another great thing about this restaurant is the outdoor seating available, which is cute and perfect for a nice day. Big red umbrellas shade patrons from the sun on hot days, and white lights around the railing illuminate this patio in the evening hours.