Houston >Restaurants > Da Marco Cucina E Vino
1520 Westheimer Road, Houston, TX | Directions 7700829.742800 -95.397729
Tue-Thu 11:30am-2pm, 5:30pm-10pm; Fri 11:30am-2pm, 5:30pm-11pm; Sat 5:30pm-11pm
Neighborhoods: Central, Neartown/ Montrose
The best Italian restaurant in town. – When I think of Italian restaurants in Houston, one comes to mind immediately: Da Marco. Marco Wiles' eponymous flagship turns out some of the most consistently delicious food in town. The corn & lobster ravioli is always scrumptious. The octopus appetizer is also phenomenal, as is their whole fish. When it's truffle season, go for the gold and get their pasta with shaved alba white truffles or black truffles; it's something you're unlikely to forget, ever.
Let me just begin by saying that I realize that I realize that this is Houston, and that means that a lot of kitchens are going to have roaches (They are hard to get rid of no matter how clean you are). I am not one to throw a fuss over the mere existence of a bug, however what I think is unforgivable is not establishing proper procedures so that the roaches do not end up on the table. Especially when you are are charging a premium at your restaurant. There is no excuse for sending out a plate, which is supposed to be clean and sanitized, with a dead roach smashed on it. (No the roach was not IN the food it was on the plate). All it takes is proper cleaning and storage.
With that being said, the service was excellent. The waiters and assistants were all courteous and helpful, if I could give them a separate rating I would. The food was only good. Not great, not amazing, not bad either, just good. Maybe I had my expectations built too high based on the ratings, but I was disappointed. Maybe I am being a food snob but at $30 to $45 dollars a plate I expect something great.
The management was terrible. I waited until I was on the way out to make him aware of the bug problem because I did not want to call attention to it before we paid (I did not want it to be one of those situations where they just brush it off because they think you are trying to get a free meal) However he still pretty much just brushed it off. He said he is having people come exterminate on Monday. He completely ignored what I was trying to say about possibly doing something about the sanitation of the plates. Exterminate all you want its not going to do anything about cleaner plates.
Basically if you are willing to pay a premium for service, and the food and cleanliness is secondary in your book, then this is the place for you. If you want a dining experience that is about culinary excellence or you are squeamish about bugs and how clean place is go somewhere else.
A step above – Obviously this isn't a place to go to everyday, but if you have a special occasion coming up you should definitely consider Da Marco's! Been taking my wife here for years and we will keep coming back.
The Best! – Houston's best Italian, traditional quality, the real deal.
Fantastic – Frequented this eatery many times, and with the exception of a rude hostess (who no longer works there), everything from the service to the food has been impeccable. The specials are fantastic and staples such as the veal and fish are extremely good
not as good – had a reservation for lunch at 12:30, i arrived at 12:20, waited to 1:20 and still no table was available and did not get any explanation from the management
Pretty Expensive, Better Than Average Italian Food – Unlike some others, our service was just fine. The dining room is indeed small and lacks intimacy. Very brightly lit. Hardwood floor makes for a relatively loud dining experience even though the crowd is not rowdy at all. The menu is in Italian with no translations. Sports fans, I've eaten at some of the nicest restaurants in America. This is a little pretentious don't you think? The wine menu is very expensive and not well organized. The sommelier will recommend any of the most expensive wines on the list. If you're not familiar with Italian wines you're going to be lost. In sum, I'm not going here again. The food was good, but not the best Italian I've had and it was very expensive. The menu was an aggravation and the wine list was too.
High End Italian – Da Marco is arguably the best Italian Restaurant in Houston. It is expensive but rightfully so given the unique and upscale items on the menu. I recommend the Business Lunch if you want to try Da Marco. For a reasonable price, you get three courses.
Impersonal service/subpar food – The waiter tried to get us to order our meals as we were odering our drinks.He seemed to be in a big hurry.
Our salads were very salty.We asked the waiter to take them back.He neither apologised nor gladly offered to take them back.When he brought back the salad,it was loaded with vinegar and sour.
The main course was OK,not great.
The service was absolutely impersonal.
The waiter never smiled nor even said good night when we started to leave.
Will not go there again.
Should be called Da Marc-up – Having recently moved to Houston from San Francisco, my husband and I don't mind paying extra for a nice meal. This is NOT THE PLACE for a nice meal. Trust me!! We arrived early for our reservation and decided to wait in the "bar"- a nasty little corner of the room jammed with people. Having a large wine collection ourselves, we were surprised to see the mark up from retail for their by the glass offerings. Highway robbery. After being seated, the waiter rolled up a chalk board of the specials. Yes, that's right- rolled up a chalk board and left it for our consideration!! We felt like students in a terrible cramped and loud classroom. The restaurant itself is in an old house kind of place with creaking wood floors that serve to amplify sound. The tables are all jammed together in such a way that one can not avoid hearing the neighboring conversations. Not too romantic, I must say. We chose to order some of the specials as well as some from the menu. All were bland and nasty. I had the fish with artichokes and risotto and it tasted much like paste. Sadly, the rest of the meal was so un-re"marc"able that it has completely left my memory. We even tried dessert, hoping for something to save this dismal evening, but it continued the whole tasteless and unmemorable trend. I wouldn't return to this restaurant under any circumstances. I am not a person who gives negative reviews- check out my other ones- but this is one overrated place and people should be warned!!
Best Italian Food – Da Marcos is always one of my top favorites in Italian cuisine! They offer a seasonal menu to keep things fresh and lively. Their food is always elegant and delicious!! A great place to impress a date or for your anniversary!! It's a must go and dine place!!
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