Locals count on Paulie's, a fast-casual cafe in Montrose, for consistently tasty Italian pasta dishes, both during their lunch hour when things get buzzy and for a laid-back dinner. This bright and cheery spot is also one of the cheapest Italian restaurants in Houston -- but that doesn't mean they skimp on quality. The pastas here are house-made, ranging from bucatini Amatriciana and canestri alla funghi to what might be the best rigatoni in the city. There's an affordable list of Italian coffees, wines, and beers on the menu, too.
This fast-casual fan favorite is one of the most wallet-friendly Italian joints in town, mainly because, like we said, it’s fast-casual. That means you can get housemade pastas, from flavorful Bucatini Amatriciana and Canestri Alla Funghi to one of the most savory Rigatonis in the city, starting at $12 a pop for a small plate (trust us, it’s plenty for one person). They also offer a splashy beer and wine list, and you can still bring your own bubbly for a $10 corking fee. Afterward, save those dollars for a trip to Camerata, the neighboring wine bar, where you can pick from more than 150 European wines, beers, and ciders. And make sure to add a couple delicious servings of imported meats and cheeses on your tab when you get hungry again—which you will, because there’s no such thing as too much when it comes to Paulie’s.
How to book: Stop by for first come, first served seating.