We arrived in Houston yesterday to drop off daughter at college. After a tussle at the Hobby Airport Avis desk with a non-functional GPS and a non-functional back seat, we arrived at the Marriott Medical Center (see separate review) brain dead and hot, hot,hot. By the time we walked the mile to Rice Village, a little enclave of shops that seem to inhabit every town with teenagers and income to spare, we were ready to implode. We settled on Gugliani's mostly to make sure our flip flops didn't melt into the sidewalk and to avoid a family feud 48 before saying goodbyes to daughter. We almost turned around and left: when we entered half a dozen large tables full of six year old kids were inhaling pizza. But as soon as we sat down, things looked up. The waiter was attentive and helpful; the a/c worked great; and they know how to pour a glass of wine at Gugliani's, which made me very happy indeed. The noise level, even with all the munchkins, was more than fine. We had veal, pasta, fried calamari, and a tomato-mozzarella salad, all of which were prepared well and quickly. This is not haute cuisine, it's just a good Italian family restaurant. But any place that serves efficiently, lets you try the wine before you order, and serves crisp not soggy calamari gets my five stars in this category. Total bill was $62 for glass wine, two non-alcoholic drinks, two appetizers and three entrees. This place is also conveniently located smack in the middle of Rice Village, but away from the Ann Taylor-Gap-Bed Bath b.s.
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