Sal’s Ristorante & Pizzeria – Albuquerque, New Mexico

“Everything you see, I owe to spaghetti.” ~Sophia Loren The ageless movie siren, perhaps the most voluptuous octogenarian in the world, is hardly a proponent of low carb diets, admitting to daily dosages of macaroni. She maintains her classic hourglass figure by limiting portions–never consuming too many calories in one meal–and by not overloading pasta with rich, thick cream or

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M’Tucci’s Italian Restaurant – Albuquerque, New Mexico

“Sometimes the spaghetti likes to be alone..” —Stanley Tucci as Segundo in Big Night With a name like M’Tucci’s Italian Restaurant, you might wonder if the Italian restaurant on the intersection of Coors and Montano is named for Academy Award nominated actor Stanley Tucci. After all, Tucci co-starred in Big Night and Julie & Julia, arguably two of the very

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TONY CAPUTO’S MARKET & DELI – Salt Lake City, Utah

Most of us know someone like Lucy Van Pelt, the irascible, bossy, highly opinionated diva in the syndicated Peanuts comic strip.   Since her debut in 1952, Lucy has been the perpetrator of two long-running gags.  One involves her holding the football (ostensibly so that Charlie Brown can kick a field goal or extra point) and pulling the ball away

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Nomad East – Salt Lake City, Utah

A-Team leader “Hannibal” Smith (George Peppard) used to say, “I love it when a plan comes together.”  We learned during our trip to Salt Lake City that sometimes baking in a little flexibility into a well thought-out plan can produce results even better than expected.  Such was the case with our trip to Salt Lake City.   Capably assisted by

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Thicc Pizza Co. – Albuquerque, New Mexico

As you’ve read on the tagline for Gil’s Thrilling (And Filling) Blog, your humble blogger fancies himself somewhat of a sesquipedalian (a person who tends to use big words).  My logophilia (the love of vocabulary) is a lifelong affliction, both in English and in Spanish.  Despite my “affair” with words, one word-related term which just doesn’t describe me is neologist

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Urban 360 Pizza, Grill and Tap House – Albuquerque, New Mexico

Babu: Our specials are tacos, moussaka and franks and beans. Jerry: Well, what do you recommend my good fellow? Babu:Oh, the turkey. ~”The Cafe, Seinfeld, Season 3, Episode 7 While perusing the menu at Urban 360 Pizza, Grill and Tap House, my ever-witty friend Ryan “Break the Chain” Scott commented that the menu reminded him of The Dream, the very

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Poppy’s Pizzeria & Italian Eatery – Albuquerque, New Mexico (CLOSED)

Chef-owner Mario D’Elia knew what he’d be in for when he named his new restaurant Poppy’s Pizzeria & Italian Eatery.  Legions of Seinfeld fans would undoubtedly joke  “Poppy’s a little sloppy,” a reference to Poppie, a restaurateur on the comedy Seinfeld who didn’t wash his hands after using the bathroom.  Sure enough,the jokes came…until the jokesters tasted the seriously outstanding

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Rustico Italian Kitchen – Albuquerque, New Mexico

What does it say about a restaurant when it runs out of food?  Nine times out of ten, you’d probably say it’s either brand new and doesn’t yet have a feel for its traffic volume or their inventory management just isn’t very good.  Our inaugural visit to Rustico Italian Kitchen on a bright Sunday morning introduced us to another reason.

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M’Tucci’s Moderno – Rio Rancho, New Mexico

“If I can make it there, I’ll make it anywhere It’s up to you, New York, New York.” ~Frank Sinatra Jeff Spiegel, managing partner of the insanely popular M’Tucci’s family of restaurants has described flagship restaurant M’Tucci’s Italian Restaurant (previously M’Tucci’s Kitchina) as “as good as anything we did in New York City.” That is really saying something considering over

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Dion’s Pizza – Albuquerque, New Mexico

Toga! Toga! Toga! Ever since the misfit Delta Tau Chi fraternity threw the most debaucherous toga party ever in the 1978 “teensploitation” comedy Animal House, the toga party has been ingrained in the college party culture. The genesis of the toga party goes back much, much further than Animal House. Toga parties, in fact, precede collegiate life in the fruited

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M’Tucci’s Twenty-Five – Albuquerque, New Mexico

“The best ingredient I discovered in America was ‘freedom.’ The freedom to experiment in the kitchen and the freedom to be open to those experiments in the dining room.” ~Massimo Bottura, Osteria Francescana Chef and Owner Adesso basta!  I’ve had it with the haughty pedantry of my Air Force comrades-in-arms who were blessed to have been stationed in La Bele

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Urbano Pasta Kitchen – Albuquerque, New Mexico

“To break bread together,” a phrase as old as the Bible, captures the power of a meal to forge relationships, bury anger, provoke laughter.” ~The Joy of Food From National Geographic Sharing a meal creates a unique sense of intimacy felt by all who sit together at the table.  It’s an act that can spark new friendships, solidify lifetime bonds

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Fat Ox – Scottsdale, Arizona

In the Alpine village of Carrù in the Piedmont region of Italy stands the “Monumento al Bue Grasso” (monument to a fat ox).  Depicting two fat oxen under yoke, the monument celebrates the beast of burden so important to the region.  December’s ‘Fiera del Bue Grasso’ (festival of the fat ox) brings together tens of thousands of visitors who come

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DeFalco’s Deli: Italian Eatery & Grocery – Scottsdale, Arizona

My Kim usually leaves the recitation of movie or television quotes to me (apparently it’s a guy thing), but every once in a while she’ll surprise me with an utterance or exclamation she could have picked up only from the big screen or idiot box.  When we strode into DeFalco’s Italian Eatery & Grocery, she approached an employee and–doing her

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AK Pizza – Albuquerque, New Mexico

“I hate it. I think it’s an abomination. There are so many awesome things here, I don’t know why that should be featured. It’s leading with your weakness. So much other great stuff.” ~Anthony Bourdain What could have rankled the ire of the world renowned celebrity chef, master raconteur and social activist?  Was it an injustice in dire need of

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