Figo

Figo

www.figopasta.com
Seven locations in the area: Buckhead; Decatur; Edgewood/Little 5 Points; North Point; Perimeter; Vinings; Westside
Open for lunch and dinner seven days a week; hours vary slightly at different locations

Dreams do come true – especially if you are in metro Atlanta dreaming of the best Italian food this side of Sicily in a family-friendly atmosphere with multiple locations. Voilà – Figo! As an “IBM” (Italian By Marriage), I’ve come to appreciate good Italian food. It’s not just about the taste, it’s about the overall dining experience. Figo doesn’t disappoint – mangia!  

What’s on the Menu: With extensive offerings of both long and short egg, spinach or whole-wheat pastas (many gluten-free) and at least 18 different slow-simmered sauces from which to select, Figo has something tasty for everyone. The salads are fresh (the Organic Insalata di Arugula with lemon vinaigrette for $3.50 was light, yet filling); the antipasti can be addictive (such as $3 Caparino goat cheese with caramelized onions and apricots on toasted ciabatta bread); and our family discovered new taste sensations sampling the signature meatballs ($1.50 each), such as the classic Nonna Maria beef meatball and the Y’all Meatball with sausage, corn, barbeque sauce and collard greens. The popular Zucca is a must-try for butternut squash lovers. The Arancini Siciliana (fried rice balls filled with mozzarella cheese) and sauce are well worth the caloric intake. Our youngest son quickly confiscated two for his personal enjoyment. 

Why Parents Will Like It: The Howell Mill Road location we visited went way beyond family friendly – and entered the realm of family savvy. As parents, it seems we rarely get to enjoy our food – we’re too busy watching our children, or always at the ready to lunge toward the possible spilled drink or dropped spoon. Too often, we may decide that it’s easier just to mumble: “Uh, I’ll take this to go.” Happily, our experience at Figo was entirely laid-back and casual. Our server quickly cleared table space for us as needed, was ready on the refills and asked that all-important question: “Would you like your children to be served as soon as possible or have all of your meals come out at the same time?” Cue the Hallelujah Chorus! Our kids did evacuate their seats just once, mid-meal, and that was to try a bite of what we had ordered!  

Why Kids Will Like It: The bambini menu for ages 10 and younger (any dish for $4.95), branches out beyond the standard fare for children; it includes sea bass and broccoli, grilled chicken and broccoli, cheese sandwich, lasagna, macaroni and cheese, and a variety of long and short pastas and sauces. Kid-sized offerings of milk, orange juice or soft drinks are $1. My 5-year-old, a self-proclaimed aficionado of macaroni and cheese (he knows the real stuff is not orange), ate every bite of his Figo cheese (mac and cheese), declining my request to save a small bite for me. A traditional Italian dessert of lightly toasted bread with Nutella hazelnut chocolate spread was big enough for both of my boys to share, and at $1.75 it doesn’t break the bank.

– Dana DiLorenzo