Please call (713)-960-0333 to reserve.
HOUSTON — They still talk about the Saturday night here 27 years ago when Donald J. Trump partied with former President Richard M. Nixon.
Dressed in tuxedos, they sang “Happy Birthday” to Texas royalty — former Gov. John B. Connally and his wife, Nellie, whose birthdays were a few days apart — as Nixon played the tune on a white baby grand piano. They dined at Tony’s, the “21” Club of Houston, and Nixon was so fond of the cannelloni pasta that he asked the owner, Tony Vallone, to write the recipe for him on a yellow legal pad. And when it was all over, Mr. Trump flew Nixon back to New York on his 727 private jet.
It happened one weekend in March 1989…
A native Houstonian, Ciao Bello’s new managing partner David Siegman began working at Tony’s in 2009 after returning to Houston with a bachelor’s degree in government from UT in Austin, where he had already been working in the restaurant trade for four years.
“He had been recommended to me by a client and friend and then Scott happened to spot him and suggested, independently, that he apply for a manager’s position at Ciao Bello,” says Tony. “And so we had him ‘cut his teeth’ at Tony’s, as they say. We always knew he’d be a great manager at Ciao Bello.”
As of November, 2016, David is now a managing partner with the group and oversees operations at Ciao Bello, Tony’s Vallone’s “italianissimo” Tanglewood trattoria, where classic Neapolitan dishes meet creative Italian cuisine.
“When I decided to try my hand at the restaurant business,” says David, “I knew I wanted to be the best. And to be the best, you need to learn from the best. Tony and Scott are two of the most dedicated and passionate restaurant professionals that I’ve ever had the opportunity to work with. The menu at Ciao Bello is the best representation of true-to-the-roots Italian cuisine in Houston, my hometown, and I couldn’t be more proud to be part of this amazing team.”
Ciao Bello, where classic Neapolitan dishes meet creative Italian cuisine…
And please call 713-960-0333 to reserve.
Reservations for Super Bowl 2017 are already beginning to come in. Please reserve by calling 713-960-0333.
Located in the Galleria (just up the road from NRG stadium where the Super Bowl 2017 will be played), Ciao Bello is legendary Houston restaurateur Tony Vallone’s “neighborhood Italian trattoria,” a casual restaurant known for its critically acclaimed “Italianissimo” menus and wine list. Named “Houston’s Best Italian Restaurant” for two years in a row by the editors of the Houston Press, Ciao Bello is widely considered to be the city’s top destination for authentic Italian cuisine and its menu features Tony’s beloved homemade pastas, fresh seafood inspired by his Neapolitan roots, thin-crust Roman-style pizzas, and, of course, Tony’s world-famous cannoli, made using a family recipe that he developed after years of research visiting Sicily’s best pastry shops. The wine list features affordable wines spanning everything from highly rated Super Tuscans to classic Tuscan Sangiovese and Sicilian Nero d’Avola. Private seated dining options range from: 35 persons (Terrazza Room), 100 persons (Giardino Room) to 250 persons (buyout). Looking for the ultimate Super Bowl pizza party? Ciao Bello has the best authentic Italian pizza in town!
One of the things that sets the Vallone family of restaurants apart in Houston’s ever-expanding food scene is Tony’s connections to Italy.
Last week, Tony hosted winemaker Cristina Ziliani (above, left), owner of the Berlucchi winery in Franciacorta, an appellation about 45 minutes east of Milan where classic-method sparkling wines are produced.
“I go to Milan every year,” says Tony. “The best restaurants there all serve Franciacorta by-the-glass. They love Champagne as much as we do here in the U.S., of course. But Franciacorta has richer fruit flavors. It’s fresher and it’s more food-friendly. After all, it’s Italian! And that’s why I’ve been serving Franciacorta by-the-glass at all my restaurants.”
“Franciacorta is one of our favorite wines here at the Vallone family of restaurants,” says Scott Sulma, who oversees the wine programs at all three restaurants. “It just works so well with the food. You can even pair the rosé with our 55-day-aged steaks.”
Look out for the Berlucchi Franciacorta sparkling Rosé, made from 100 percent Pinot Noir grapes.