Osteria Pronto

It’s hard to forget that the towering J.W. Marriott permanently displaced Austin’s beloved Las Manitas. There, we said it. But we are grateful to the new hotel for adding no fewer than three options to the dining desert that, until fairly recently, has been North Congress. In addition to the walk-up Burger Bar and the laid-back Corner, there’s Osteria Pronto, a cavernous space with all the hallmarks of the generically classy hotel restaurant: private dining rooms, sleek furnishings, a showy open kitchen. A few items from the straightforward Italian menu seemed to favor presentation over taste, like a tuna carpaccio, the fish pounded into a thin disk and festooned with baby radishes, hard-boiled quail eggs, and edible flowers; its beautiful plating was at odds with the bland flavor. Ditto the burrata, the generous ball of creamy cheese perched atop a tomato “jam,” the two separated by a thin round of balsamic gel; it needed texture, and no one component stood out. Things started to look up, though, with a lush bowl of house-made pappardelle, the fat noodles tossed with braised lamb, cipollini, and king trumpet mushrooms and the crispy-edged sea bass draped with rapini and resting atop pillows of polenta in a pool of red-bell-pepper broth. The accommodating servers seem a little green (ours had trouble explaining some of the dishes), but the bustling hotel lobby and line of taxicabs outside make Austin feel all grown up. (5/15)    

City: Austin


Drinks: Bar

Price: $$-$$$


Address: J.W. Marriott, 110 E. 2nd , Austin, TX, 78701

Hours: L Mon–Fri. B & D 7 days.

Phone: 512-608-4490

Website: www.osteriaprontoaustin.com

Last updated: April 7, 2015