At Cochiaro's Pizza, all pies start out as a disc of freshly-made dough. Once the dough is rolled out—customers can choose from regular, thin, or extra-thin crust pizza—, it's slathered in Cochiaro's signature sauce and crowned with whole milk cheese. Customers can then order specific toppings from an array of eight meats and 12 veggies. Of course, the cooks know that not everyone is in the mood for pizza all the time. So to satisfy this crowd, they prepare pastas, burgers, and BBQ rib tips.
In 1976, an empty Elmhurst storefront became the conduit for chef Angelo Battaglia’s culinary dreams when he founded Two Brothers from Italy Ristorante & Pizzeria with his wife, Rosalia. Now grown to four times its original size, the restaurant still serves up Angelo’s original recipes, prepared under the guidance of the Battaglias' daughter, Joanne. The voluminous menu swaps between pizzas peppered with 29 different toppings and pastas served with your choice of 10 noodles and eight sauces. Waiters ferry each plate beneath rounded archways into a dining room whose white tablecloths and floral accents radiate refinement. Private party specials, including a seven-course family-style meal, feed clusters of 25 or more without the need to pry off an asteroid-sized chunk of the moon's cheese.
As a high-school student working at a local pizzeria, John Schnatter often pondered how he would do things differently if he owned such a business himself. After graduating from college in 1983, he got his chance, knocking down the broom closet in his father’s tavern to create his own pizza-delivery business. Since then Papa John’s has grown to 3,500 restaurants in 50 states and 29 countries. At each location, cooks cover the signature hand-tossed crusts, made with high-protein flour and clear, filtered water, with tomato sauce from vine-ripened California tomatoes, then pile on locally sourced ingredients such as green peppers and onions. The emphasis on fresh ingredients extends to the 100% mozzarella cheese, beef, and pork, which are never artificially inflated with fillers or undeserved compliments.
In addition to delivering pizzas, Papa John’s reaches out to the community with charity involvement, including partnering with the Boy Scouts of America and Junior Achievement to teach US students about entrepreneurship and the best method of capturing a wild roma tomato.
At RoccoVIno's, a dish can never be too Italian. That's why you can order a pizza—already an Italian staple—in Italiano style, crowned in spinach, tomato, and three types of cheese. Customers add their own personal touch to the pizzas, too, choosing from thin crust, classic pan, and stuffed-crust deep dish styles, or select a specialty pizza such as the Margherita, Veggie Delight, or il Paisano. The pasta dishes are similarly customizable, filled with noodles from farfalle to rigatoni and drizzled in a choice of 10 sauces. These include a spicy tomato sauce made from only tomatoes that look like winking faces. Other gourmet Italian dishes include seafood risotto mixed with scallops, calamari, and shrimp, filet mignon, topped with a chunk of gorgonzola cheese, chicken or eggplant parmigiana, lasagna, and baked mostaccioli.