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The owners of Mexican-Italian fusion restaurant El Barzon have officially opened their sister restaurant La Noria Bistro.

Located next door at 5517 Michigan, the anticipated new spot also blends Mexican and Italian cuisine, but in a more casual setting than El Barzon.

La Noria, owned by chef Norberto Garita and his family, has been in the works for years. News broke in early 2015 that the Garitas purchased Zorba’s Coney Island with plans to open a second restaurant.

Now the restaurant is finally open for lunch and dinner with casual fare like wood-fired thin-crust pizzas topped with classic toppings like pepperoni, as well as pies with more flair like prosciutto and arugula. The traditional-style Neapolitan margherita pizza comes with fresh mozzarella, basil and tomatoes as it should, but it also includes melted shredded mozzarella for an extra cheesy touch.

If there’s anything as popular as pizza, it’s tacos, and La Noria has those, too. The taco arabe is a simple taco of seasoned pork that’s been shaved off a vertical spit and inserted in a soft flour tortilla. There are also chicken and steak tacos.

A great example of blending Italian and Mexican is La Noria Bistro’s cemita – a torta sandwich – with a chicken milanese filet on a chewy, toasted sesame seed bun that’s also stuffed with guacamole, poblanos and a thick layer of shredded cheese.

The restaurant, which is broken into two dining rooms, also has full bar service. Besides glass-topped tables, there are few booths, plus seating at the bar and at a counter overlooking the wood-fired pizza oven.

La Noria is at 5517 Michigan in Detroit. Call (313) 338-3545 or visit facebook.com/lanoriabistro.

mbaetens@detroitnews.com

Twitter: @melodybaetens

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