There’s something about Stefano’s Brooklyn Pizza in Harlingen that is so welcoming.
It could be location, nestled in a scenic and relaxing tract of land. It could be the service, friendly and intimately aware of the items on a large and varied menu. It might also be the ambiance, peaceful and inviting.
On top of it all, however, is the food. A plethora of choices that, so far in my visits, have been nothing but spectacular.
On this trip, I took the big boy route and ordered the “Discover Italy” dish, a large plate with fettuccine Alfredo, lasagna and chicken parmigiana. I’ll probably still be eating it while you’re reading this. It was large and it was lovely. What stood out immediately were the three different types of pasta and the variety of flavors that came along with this tongue-tantalizing dish.
Each one of these “smaller” portions of their bigger brothers and sisters on the menu, was a meal in itself. The taste and the texture of each item ran the spectrum of joy and happiness. My biggest concern was how long it was going to take me to get my Sunday nap. All other worries just evaporated.
The hostess also recommended the cheese bread as an appetizer – it was more like cheese pizza. A large, round flattened pizza-like dish with warm bread, delicious melted cheese and some of the best marinara I’ve tasted, with chunks of tomato and cooked onion, it was a fabulous way to start the meal.
The only thing was that I didn’t start the meal with it. With temperatures “dipping” to the high 50s and low 60s at this point, I thought a bowl of wedding soup sounded like a perfect beginning. It was hot – not burn-your-face off hot, but hot. Any chills left quickly like if sitting by a fireplace in the middle of winter – anywhere but here in the Valley.
The soup, in a rich chicken broth was chock full of pasta, fresh herbs, and tiny meatballs. I can’t remember ever eating wedding soup, but this experience kicked off a trip where any stress was removed by pasta, cheese, sauce and more.