The Godfather

In a beautiful new memoir/cookbook, one of the city’s standard-bearers of Italian cuisine — and family tradition — tells all.

Debora Smail

A descendant of Sicilians and a member of the city’s largest and most storied intermingling of food families, restaurateur Johnny Carrabba’s culinary journey began in Corleone — yes, that Corleone — and wound its way through his famous uncles’ kitchens and to the heights of Houston’s food scene. His empire grew to more than 250 eateries worldwide, before he came “back home” to his two original Carrabba’s Italian restaurants on Kirby and Voss, plus Grace’s and Mia’s Table, named after his grandmother and daughter respectively — and Common Bond Café and Bakery, which he co-owns. Now, with help from editors Roni Atnipp and Doug Williams, he’s sharing his best stories and recipes in a new book, With Gratitude, Johnny Carrabba, hitting shelves now. The following is an excerpt.

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