I knew about the inexpensive wine at Carrabba's happy hour from 4 to 7 p.m. on weekdays, but I didn't know about the food. After seeing a table card for $5 pizza, bruschette, calamari and a few other items when I was in a few weeks ago, I headed back this week.
Well, I had no idea that the pizza was full size. I'd already ordered the calamari and we were waiting for it when we decided to order the rustica pizza, with eggplant and Italian sausage, and the chicken pizza, too.
When the calamari came to the table, I told the server that I wanted the happy hour portion, and she said that's what I had. Besides being an enormous portion — for $5! — it was also excellent. Hot, with a crisp crust and tender from the first piece to the last, not even slightly rubbery. It was served with a light marinara, but I was happy with a squeeze of lemon.
The pizzas were thin crust, generously topped and plenty for two to split. One went in a box untouched, and there was no need to even consider dinner after such a substantial happy hour. The wine was $2.75 per glass, and the pizzas and calamari were $5. The total damage, for what amounted to dinner for two and a full leftover pizza, was about $22 with tax and without tip.
These specials are available in the bar area only. It's a perfect spot to run in for a quick bite and a glass of wine (house wine only for $2.75) after a long day of shopping or of working. Split a pizza with a friend and have a glass of wine each, and you'll split a check of about $11.
Carrabba's in Memphis is at 5110 Poplar, (685-9900) and in Collierville, at 4600 Merchants Park Circle, Ste. 141 (854-0200).
— Jennifer Biggs: 529-5223