In the only formal review this week, Press critic Katharine Shilcutt pens an enthusiastic endorsement of the Italian-Mexican fusion at Bellissimo. "Machuca's influence and deft techniques are also found in a jaw-droppingly good lasagna, the layers impossibly fine and separating pockets of finely ground beef under a blanket of mozzarella and a marinara sauce that tastes far more like the cumin-laced chile gravy you'd find on good beef enchiladas. It was a stunning find. Although I rarely suffer dining envy, my dining companion was provoking full-scale jealousy on a recent Monday night as he saved me three bites and gobbled up the rest of the enchilada-esque lasagna for himself." [Houston Press]
Although she didn't write a review this week, Chronicle critic Alison Cook did visit the newly opened second location of seminal taco restaurant Karancho's in Seabrook. While she finds that it lacks some of the charm of the original Channelview location, Cook writes that "Karanchos' mesquite-grilled chicken and pork, in taco and torta form, surpass most of the food in the immediate area, with the possible exception of Stomp's burger joint further down 146 toward Bacliff." Cook also awards disappointing a D to the burger at Carlos Beer Garden & Barber Shop in Webster due to an over-cooked patty that lacked juiciness. [Houston Chronicle/29-95]
Houstonia food editor Robb Walsh heads to Maine-ly Sandwiches, where he agrees with future colleague Shilcutt's recent enthusiastic endorsement of the signature lobster rolls. Walsh also recommends the biscuit sandwich at Montrose coffee shop Blacksmith and the kebabs and grilled seafood dishes at recently opened Middle Eastern restaurant Sayed.
The Blogs: Mike Riccetti recommends Market Square Bar & Grill for the six people looking for somewhere to eat before an Astros game. Chili Bob's Houston Eats tries the Middle Eastern food at Dandanah Cafe & Grill. Catherine Martin arbitrarily awards Beaver's +183 for printing up signings with funny pictures. Bayou City Bites gets a first look at ice house D&T Drive Inn. Urban Swank compiles 10 of their "tried and true" restaurants. Finally, this week's entertaining rant comes from blogger Cory Crow, who disapproves of the Chronicle's enthusiasm about downtown Houston's rapidly expanding bar and restaurant scene. If someone knows whether this site is or isn't part of Crow's FoodBorg, please post in the comments.