Da Marco, Houston, TX (Italian)

Chef Marco Wiles was born in Italy and raised in the United States. As a child, he began cooking with his aunt during summers spent in northeastern Italy. He worked for several celebrated restaurants in Houston before opening DaMarco in an old house in the Montrose section of Houston. Since then, he has opened several other restaurants in the Houston area.  

Da Marco’s cuisine is old-style Italian. You might want to start with the Grilled Octopus served with pepperoncini, orange, and potatoes. It is perfectly grilled to be crispy with a flavor of citrus. The wild boar pappardelle pasta features tender boar and perfectly cooked pasta. All plates of pasta are made fresh, in-house. Guests rave about the Chianti braised short ribs with polenta Cacia e Pepe. A nod to the wildlife in Texas is the delicious Texas Quail with cannellini beans and speck. Save room for dessert! The Panna Cotta is prepared perfectly with just the right texture and creaminess. Of course, they also offer Cannoli, made the classic style with sheep’s milk ricotta, chocolate, and a hint of orange. The food and service are excellent at DaMarco’s, as well as the wine list which features items not found anywhere but Italy. 

DaMarco followed COVID-19 local restrictions but remained open. They did require temperature checks for guests as well as employees.  



AAA: 4 diamonds 

Website: www.darmarcohouston.com  

Phone: (713) 807-8857

Tony Lagana

Chef Tony is a 42-year veteran of the food industry and is often known by his peers as “The New Product Guru.” Throughout his illustrious culinary career, he’s earned several notable titles and positions including Acquisition International’s “Most Influential Product Development Expert, U.S.” in 2019.

In 1997, Tony also founded Culinary Systems Inc., a group of culinary consultants that assist with culinary training, restaurant start-ups, concept development, and more. Since then, Tony and his team have generated over two billion dollars in sales for their clients in restaurants, retail, and manufacturing.

The strategic, technical, and culinary skills of Tony and his team can be seen on the menus of national chains, in the portfolio of national food manufacturers, and on the grocery shelves of products produced by major retail companies.