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Three bites: Papillote, Ruth's Chris, Wangs II
Papillote pleases the palate



I feel so chic when I eat at this little French-cuisine-to-go bistro on bustling Broughton Street. I sit in the window, watch the passers-by hustling about and revel in the decadence and genuinely delicious experience I'm having inside. On a recent visit, a pair of savory house-made lamb sausages found their way onto a fresh baguette -- along with sautéed zucchini and enough hot sauce for credibility. It was simple, awe-inspiring fresh and rendered me foolish with joy. A crumbly and generous wedge of Gateua Breton satisfied my sweet tooth -- but not so much that I couldn't enjoy a sample of passion fruit and mango mousse -- and a fresh chocolate macaroon filled with hazelnut creme. Daily specials supplement a sparkling little menu that has grown steadily since opening. A tip of the beret to Chef Hervé Didailler and his partner Ann Marie Apgar for making such an impressive mark on Savannah's dining scene.

218 W. Broughton St./232-1881


Ruth's Chris Steak House

Even the steak-crazed editors of Texas Monthly magazine heap honors on this national steak house chain. It's a go-to dependable source for a beautifully prepared, sizzling piece of prime beef and giant portions. One of my favorite Ruth's Chris experiences though is to slip into the comfortable bar, order an appetizer or two, a glass of wine and chat with friends. The portions are just right, the food perfectly prepared and the experience rewarding. Recently Ms. T.J. and I stopped in and shared the signature Ruth's Chris Chop Salad, a beautiful and flavorful assortment of julienne iceberg lettuce, baby spinach and radicchio tossed with red onions, mushrooms, green olives, bacon, eggs, hearts of palm, croutons, bleu cheese, lemon basil dressing and topped with crispy onions. The calamari has to rank among the best in the city. It is tossed with a sweet and sour coating and served with a generous scattering of roasted red pepper. It's a perfect snack to enjoy while catching football at the bar. Happy hour specials offer these dishes, as well a combination platter for ridiculously low prices. Add in reduced prices for beer and wine --and you'll see why Ruth's Chris is becoming a hot after-work destination.

111 W. Bay St./721-4800


Wang's II

Made-to-order Chinese lunch in an comfortable setting -- with a beverage -- for under $10? Wang's II blew me away last week with an order of Sliced chicken, Hunan style, a choice of soup and rice and iced tea for $8.25! Yeah, I could have beat the price at a drive-thru, but it was worth a couple of extra bucks to be waited on while I caught up with text messages. The chicken dish offered plenty of tender, sliced and slightly spiced chicken, snow peas, carrot, chopped baby corn and broccoli in a savory brown sauce. I chose won ton soup -- with two big pork-stuffed noodles, and fried rice. Hot, fresh and a super value. My fortune cookie said this would be a good weekend to eat out.

7601 Waters Ave./355-0321