Why? Stino da Napoli and Paragon Wine Bar!

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I have two short restaurant reviews to share with you: one on the West side and one of the East side. One is an old favorite that I hadn’t been to in ages and one is a new-to-me place suggested by a reader, Daniela.

Earlier this month, I met up with my friend Chrissy for dinner at Stino da Napoli. I’ve always really enjoyed Stino, but hadn’t been in quite awhile. This cute Italian restaurant is located in the Old River Shopping Area.

For my entree, I chose the Fettucini de Ferdinando II.

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Tender noodles were topped with a chunky tomato sauce with pancetta, basil, and baby mozzarella. The sauce was very fresh and tasty, but I would have liked the pancetta a bit crispier (perhaps just sprinkled on top the sauce).

The pasta portion size at Stino da Napoli isn’t overwhelmingly large and the price point follows. My entree was a very reasonable $13. Which left room in both my stomach and my budget for dessert.

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I had the Frangelico brownie: a decadent chocolate brownie, swimming in Frangelico and topped with vanilla ice cream and whipped cream. Sinfully good!

Pro tip: Stino doesn’t accept credit/debit cards and doesn’t have an ATM. Make sure you have cash on hand when you go! For classic Italian food in a quaint setting, I definitely recommend Stino da Napoli.

A week after that, Matthew and I had dinner with friends Beth and Enzo at Paragon Wine Bar in Euclid. We went on a Monday night, as recommended, for the burger and pint special. The standard house Paragon burger paired with a pint of any draft beer is only $7.

First, though, Matthew and I split the Little Mac, a small crock of mac and cheese with beef brisket.

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The cheese sauce was rich and creamy, with a nice peppery kick and caramelized onions. The brisket could have been a bit more tender, though.

Our burgers were quite tender, juicy and flavorful. While Paragon has a handful of specialty burgers on the menu, only the house burger is part of the Monday night special. The burger comes with onion, lettuce, tomato, pickles, and your choice of cheese. Served with rosemary fries and paired with a draft from Paragon’s ample craft beer list, it made a great $7 meal!

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Paragon has more of the feel of a local pub than a wine bar, but they have a nice wine list and good craft beer selection, as well as diverse tapas-style appetizers, burgers, sandwiches, and flatbreads. This was a nice new East-side find!

What’s a favorite restaurant that you haven’t been to in too long or a new favorite you’ve recently discovered?

jenclesig_pur

5 Responses

  1. jessica mackeigan

    I love Stino and haven’t been there in years, thanks for the reminder. Will have to make a trip there soon. Although, for dessert I would go up the street away into Lakewood for gelato at Sweet Spot! I would also recommend another great little Italian restaurant on the west side, Peppers, which is on Detroit Ave. in Lakewood just west of 117th. The Chicken Picata is to die for and is a huge portion; tastes just as good reheated the next day.

  2. Paragon is my Cheers! They know my name, what I drink and treat me like family. Can’t say enough good things about them. The owner has another new east side restaurant coming soon-I can’t wait for it to open!

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