Maggiano’s Little Italy Grand Opening in Memorial City

Maggiano’s Little Italy is bringing its Italian-American cuisine to Memorial City and we couldn’t be happier. We were on hand hours prior to the restaurant’s grand opening to the general public to sample some delicious appetizers (including a delicious new bruschetta bar), entrees and desserts.

The new Memorial restaurant is the third Houston location. The others are in the Galleria and Baybrook Mall. The restaurant was mirrored after the original entrance to Memorial City Mall and even has a picture of the historical photo near the bar. Private dining options are available in a special back room of the restaurant and can accommodate up to 60 people.

Prior to the “pasta cutting” to signify the opening of the restaurant, Maggiano’s presented a check to the Make-A-Wish Foundation, one of the charitable organizations the restaurant supports. This year, all Houston locations will donate a total of $42,000 to the foundation.

Executive chef Philippe Verain, who has been cooking since age six, tells 2 Girls Who Travel that food was always his passion, but he didn’t realize he could make a living out of it.

“I actually first went to college for mechanical engineering,” he said. “But since I was supporting myself through college and still cooking professionally, I thought, ‘why not just do it for a living?’ So I switched and started my culinary journey with schools throughout the world.”

Philippe, who has 15 years of culinary experience, has trained and worked in Canada; Cannes, France; Tuscany, Italy; and the United States.

Selfie with the chef

Selfie with the chef

He shared his three favorite menu items – zucchini fritte, chicken parmesan and chocolate zuccotto cake – before guests were invited to sample all of the delicious food!

Zucchini fritte with lemon aioli

Zucchini fritte with lemon aioli

Chicken parmesan

Chicken parmesan

Chocolate zuccotto cake

Chocolate zuccotto cake

The bruschetta bar is a new addition to the menu that was launched August. 1. Guests can mix-and-match from five different kinds of bruschetta. Our favorites were the tomato, balsamic and garlic bruschetta and the spiced shrimp, bacon, roasted peppers and corn fondue bruschetta.

Bruschetta heaven - our faves!

Bruschetta heaven – our faves!

Famous Rigatoni 'D'

Famous Rigatoni ‘D’

Grilled salmon lemon and herb - this tasted superb!!

Grilled salmon lemon and herb – this tasted superb!!

Lasagna

Lasagna

Gigi's butter cake - oh my, this tasted like a little bit of heaven!

Gigi’s butter cake – oh my, this tasted like a little bit of heaven!

Cheesecake with strawberries and sauce - this is worth breaking any diet for!

Cheesecake with strawberries and sauce – this is worth breaking any diet for!

Tiramisu

Tiramisu

Maggiano’s Little Italy is located at 602 Memorial City Mall, Houston, Texas, 77024.

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