Located in the Gateway Overlook shopping center near Trader Joe's and Costco is the Howard County and newest branch of the regional Mamma Lucia empire. The original Mamma Lucia opened in Rockville in 1997 and there are now ten restaurants in Maryland and Virginia serving "down home Italian cooking."
Mamma Lucia's is one of the better places in the area for family friendly Italian cooking. The menu is extensive, with a full complement of pizzas, pastas, chicken, veal and seafood dishes. The portions are large and the quality is pretty good. It's not fine Italian cuisine, but they do the basics well. We liked the complimentary garlic bread and dipping oil that appeared just after we sat down. There's a full bar slightly separated from the dining area, service is friendly and the decor is pleasant in a pre-fab kind of way. Mamma Lucia's is also a good place to visit at lunch, when prices are lower and portions a little more manageable.
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