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What's cooking/Capsule reviews March 15 

What's cooking

The Italian House and Grill is open just outside the main gate of Hot Springs Village on state Highway 7 in Garland County. The restaurant, operated by Adriano Pricop and Raul Santos, opened about three months ago and serves all types of Italian cuisine. Pricop is a native of Sicily and also owns Cool Beans Cafe on Central Avenue in Hot Springs.

Hours are 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Lunch and dinner specials are offered daily. The restaurant offers wine and is soon to have a full bar. The telephone number is 501-984-6602.

Yes, we’re sometimes directionally challenged. Layla’s in the River Market has moved to the northwest corner of the complex, not the northeast as we reported last week (nor any other corner that other publications might have reported last week). Also, the new Scapetto’s Italian Deli and Catering, which opened where Layla’s and the now-closed Olive Branch used to operate, has a full range of offerings, including Italian Hoagies, sandwiches, meat loaf, baked ziti, chicken parmesan and steak wraps, plus dozens more items to create a take-home Italian dinner. The Scapetto’s menu can be found online at www.rivermarket.info/scapettosmenu.pdf.

Correction: Hours for Wasabi Bar Grill Sushi, at 101 Main St., are 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Saturday. The new downtown restaurant, which was reviewed in the March 8 issue, is not open on Sunday.

Capsule reviews

POKEY D’S If we were to hold a “best cheeseburger” contest in Little Rock, this would be in it. The thick, juicy and nicely seasoned burger with the fixin’s is not to be missed. Rib tips and other fare are available, but nothing compares to Pokey’s cheeseburger. Timing can sometimes be an issue at Pokey D’s; we caught a crowd from a convention in line recently with one attendant behind the counter, and she was taking a massive phone order as well. Alas, it was still worth the wait when we sunk our teeth into that first bite of burger, but we’re likely to call ahead next time. 201 E. Markham St. No alcohol. CC. $-$$. 374-2020. L Mon.-Thu., LD Fri.-Sat.

RED APPLE INN While dinner is always a delight with steaks or prime rib in a cozy, romantic setting, the Red Apple may star at breakfast over any other meal. On weekends, there is a breakfast buffet available until 10:30 a.m., and for eggs-bacon-sausage lovers, this might be a sure way to go. We prefer the items off the menu, and most especially the eggs Sedona, which is the Red Apple’s version of eggs Benedict, but with tenderloin substituted for Canadian bacon, and the hollandaise given a chipotle touch. Maybe even better than that, though, are the tacos de papas, which are rich in chorizo, eggs and cheese, so much so that you might find yourself wanting to sop up the grease on the plate with a biscuit. Sides of sour cream and guacamole make this, while seemingly a more “brunch” item than breakfast serving, the perfect meal to carry you through the day. You also can’t go wrong with the Red Apple Country Breakfast, which is your basic eggs, bacon and biscuits, and the waffles are massive and magnificent, particularly the banana. Your server will add a lagniappe of grits to everyone’s plate (they bring by eggplant casserole at dinner). Breakfast will cost from $7-$10 per person, not including drinks and gratuity. 1000 Country Club Road, Eden Isle. Full bar. CC $$-$$$ 501-326-3111 BLD daily.

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