While prix fixe menus and other special deals proliferate at local restaurants in the summer, some also stage dinner series that dial in the cooking of specific food regions around the globe. The format gives chefs a chance to geek out on a particular cuisine and gives diners another reason to plan a visit. Two in particular have grown to be annual traditions and both are good values too.
For instance, for more than a dozen summers now, Vega Tapas Café has produced its "Tour of the Mediterranean” series, featuring a different country bordering the wine-dark sea each week, with the particular menu available Monday through Saturday. This week, the tour hits Tunisia, then it’s on to Egypt (July 22-28) with further menus for Turkey, Greece, Italy, France and Spain extend through the end of August. Each menu includes five to eight small plates and costs $27, with optional wine pairings for $15 more.
In the Warehouse District, Adolfo Garcia’s restaurant a Mano refines the regional focus even closer, focusing on specific regions around central and southern Italy for special menus served on Wednesday nights only. Calabria will be featured on July 24 and the series runs through Sicily, Campania, Sardinia and Tuscany. These regional menus are served through Aug. 21, and each multi-course meal costs $35.
870 Tchoupitoulas St., (504) 208-9280
Vega Tapas Café
2051 Metairie Road, Metairie, (504) 836-2007