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Good to Go: Meatballs from Il Bracco Hold up Across Town

This container is serious comfort food.EXPAND
This container is serious comfort food.
Taylor Adams

Good to Go is a column where our food writers explore Dallas’ restaurant scene through takeout orders, delivery boxes and reheated leftovers.

For months now, chefs in town have been posting about a certain to-go container full of sauce-drenched meatballs from Il Bracco in University Park.

That’s for good reason.

There’s plenty of good flavor coming out of this spot, but those meatballs are phenomenal and even a favorite dish for CEO Robert Quick.

“We had experienced a lot of really heavily reduced tomato sauces, and that wasn’t what we were going for with this dish: The richness of the meatball needs a lighter, fresher tomato sauce, et cetera, to balance it out,” he says.

The meatballs are perfectly complemented by a light tomato sauce.EXPAND
The meatballs are perfectly complemented by a light tomato sauce.
Taylor Adams

Meatballs are frequently filled with breadcrumbs, drying out the meat, Quick says. II Bracco instead adds a buttermilk panade, which injects the meat with additional moisture.

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Take a bite of that meatball alone, and it’s meaty and fine, just short on salt. But taste it with that perfectly seasoned sauce, and you find a complement that makes just the right bite.

Alongside this is crispy focaccia — not terribly tall and fried in good olive oil.

It’s the perfect bit of comfort food in a plastic container. Sure, it would be a lovely plate to share among friends at a dining table inside the restaurant, but it’s perfectly consumed — even after a 17-minute car ride — solo on a couch with reruns of True Blood, or whatever you’re binge-watching these days to keep going.

Il Bracco, 8416 Preston Center Plaza, University Park. Open for limited dine-in and curbside takeout 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday through Thursday; and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday through Saturday.

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