Basque Hotel: 1102 F St, Fresno.: Best lamb I've had in Fresno ever. This authentic bar/restaurant is a real piece of Fresno history, here since 1922. You go through the bar to get to the dining room, you can get an individual table or sit at the communal table when its crowded. The service is friendly and accommodating. This is family style, so you get enough side dishes for the table and its up to you to serve yourselves from those bowls. And then there's the other thing about Basque food.. you get A LOT! You choose an entree...and from there you get bread, soup, salad, potato salad with shrimp, sometimes really excellent fries, a stew of some type, and a little dish of ice cream at the end. Prices are reasonable.. and everything is aggresively seasoned and cooked perfectly. Don't forget to order a Picon Punch, a favorite drink of the Basques.
Mike's Pizzeria: 3228 N West Ave Fresno, CA: It's not for the pizza that I recommend this Fresno favorite, but for everything else...I used to dislike calzones and minestrone...until I came to Mike's.. everything they make is homemade... and fantastic! Last time I took a chance and ordered off the specials menu...chicken pot pie ravioli...sounds weird, tastes extraordinary! I used to go to the one behind Outback on Shaw and Marks.. then we found this one.. and I'm hooked by the delightful service, and the ambiance, particularly the real Italian radio station piped in on the sound system.. it was heavenly! I can also recommend the linguini with clam sauce...so good, so clammy, so garlicky! Best Italian food in town in my opinion. (caveat: still can't recommend the pizza...the search continues!)