The Lower Gulf Coast Restaurants

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Barbatella

cooking class at Barbatellas

Barbatella Review

This trattoria with an edge was the most buzzed-about opening in 2012; it's still just as popular. The restaurant has three dining spaces to suit any whim: the wine bar, with sleek eclectic decor, has a communal table, green ceiling medallions, crystal chandeliers wrapped in birdcages, and a wine dispenser that allows guests to sip their way through 32 bottles (Italian, of course) by the 1-, 3-, or 6-ounce glass. The brick room, with 150-year-old recycled floors, is more casual and open to the kitchen; and the central patio is shaded and relaxed. The menu, straight-up Italian and expertly done, stars refined versions of classics, including bruschetta, fried calamari, lasagna, and wood-fired pizza. Don't miss the house's sweetest treat: a gelateria that's open to passersby on Third Street South is a partnership with artisan-chocolate king Norman Love.

Updated: 05-12-2014

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