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58 Texas Coastal Bend tour guide Early Summer 2015 Corpus Christi catfish charlies Mamma Mias Corpus Christians and visitors alike have enjoyed real Italian cooking from real Ital- ians by way of New York for some twenty years at this otherwise low profile down- town eatery. What you expect in a genuine trattoria is what you find at Mamma Miasthe freshest pasta in town aged meats and cheeses expertly prepared seafood prime filet medallions under the perfect mushroom sauce and lots of hugs and personality from the restaurants legendary owner. 128 N. Mesquite St. 361 883-3773 Middle East Restaurant Market For many years Corpus Christians enjoyed the citys best gyros and baklava at the food counter of this mini-grocery store that specializes in Arab Greek Persian Indian and European products. Earlier this year the food counters many fans were thrilled to see the full service Middle East Restaurant open up next door and the accolades are coming in Diners enjoy authentic regional cuisine including those famous gyros Kibbi Sheesh Tawook Chicken Tikka Suflaki Shawarma Lamb Kabobs Falafel and Kafta. Youll also find the very best Tabbouleh salad Hummus Samosa Baba Ghanoush plus an array of Greek salads soup and those incredibly delicious Baklava. The scene is casual cafe and you will enjoy watching your meal being prepared in the open kitchen. 5405 Everhart Rd. two blocks south of SPID 361 854-8445 La Playa Mexican Restaurant Cantina In a city with over 80 taquerias the quest for fresh high quality Mexican food es- pecially for out of town visitors can be a hit and miss effort to say the least. La Playa on SPID just south of Weber Road is your first and final stop for great food the best Margaritas in town and friendly prompt service like one would expect in Mexico itself. Enjoy delicious sizzling fajitas prepared from beef chicken shrimp and sau- sage the house signature delicacy the stuffed fried avocado giant shrimp cocktails traditional Tex-Mex tacos enchiladas and tamales a fantastic selection of gourmet seafood dishes from both coasts of Mexico wonderful salads and soups steaks and barbecue including Baby Back ribs and even decadent desserts like tres leches cake. Full cantina bar offering house specialty drinks including top shelf Margaritas and daquiris. 4102 S. Staples St. next to Wallbangers 361 728-6445 Catfish Charlies For 35 years this Southern-style fish house has delighted generations of diners who enjoy the very best freshwater pure water Mississippi Fried Catfish you will find in South Texas along with crowd favorite fried shrimp and oysters. True to the South- ern tradition Catfish Charlies is one of the few local establishments where youll find Cajun style Frog Legs. Terrific Opelousas style seafood gumbo and those awesome Hush Puppies along with Bayou Teche Creole Shrimp complete the simple but incredibly delicious menu. Beer wine and homemade Sangria. 5830 McArdle Rd. at Airline Rd. 361 993-0363 catfishcharlies.net