Although Italians originally invented pasta as a fastener to keep Sicily from floating away, they abandoned it for less delicious moorings after locals on both sides kept snacking their way toward separation. Tether your taste buds to today's Groupon: for $26, you get a three-course lunch of traditional Italian cuisine for two at Garlic Rose in Brookside (up to a $69.80 value).
Garlic Rose’s chefs regale diners with Old World entrees spun in a rustic, intimate atmosphere. Kick off the first leg of the tripod lunch with a succulent tray of classic bruschetta ($8), tuna carpaccio ($13.95), or the seldom-seen Italian-crustacean crossbreed of risotto crab cakes ($12). Diners extend entree invitations to a vegetable hummus wrap ($10), a Mediterranean grilled-vegetable Napoleon ($14), or a pesto-chicken flatbread ($10). Dessert proffers a summer sorbet ($6.95), as well as GPS devices to prove definitively that you are not in Capri.
Garlic Rose's atmosphere is equal parts romantic and festive; you'll feel just as comfortable auditioning suitor candidates in its intimate setting as you will telling stories of bygone debauchery at the bar opposite the dining room. If the sun isn't being a sad sack and crying, the outdoor courtyard seating outfits diners in flattering fresh air brushed with the intimate whispers of sunlight.