Bella Vita offers a menu of authentic Italian entrees, traditional weekend brunch, and an expansive, international wine list set amid an inviting interior spotted with low-hanging lights and sleek marble accents. Once the green-napkin flag has been waved, diners are free to tear around the entree track, crashing into Arista alla Milanese, featuring braised pork shoulder stewed in white wine and sage, topped with a sausage-and-bacon sauce, and served snuggled with potatoes ($18). Smoked stacks of salmon fettuccini alfredo will impress even the most critical mermaid dates ($19), as will antipasti dishes such as the olive-oiled caprese ($10) and the gamberi rossi, featuring sautéed prawns with shallots and fresh tomatoes in a white-wine sauce ($12).
Because it’s located in a strip mall, Villa Nuova Santana Ristorante Italiano can be easy to overlook. “Don’t let the unassuming cover fool you; Villa Nuova is certainly worth discovering for yourself,” the Herald says in a review. Inside, crisp white tablecloths make space for fresh bread and olive oil seasoned with a house recipe of garlic, red pepper, and top-secret deliciousness. Generous glasses of wine pair with mussels and clams served in a buttery white-wine sauce. Other entrees include heaping helpings of cannelloni and pork tenderloin sautéed in gorgonzola cream sauce. Artwork on the walls evokes the spirit of the Sistine Chapel, except here visitors can eat and enjoy the sights without a permanent crick in their neck.
The handmade, fresh pizzas and specialty pies at Bella Kitchen are constructed in the classic New York style, which feature foldy-thin crusts, humorously neurotic toppings, and a gruff exterior that hides the heart of a lonely romantic. Signature dough disc selections such as the chicken garlic (with green pepper, tomato, green olive and onion, $9.95—$19.95) or the herbivore-happifying roasted veggie pie (with artichoke, sun-dried tomatoes, red peppers, and eggplant, $9.95–$19.95) are sure to please pizza-craving poets. The indecisive, meanwhile, can get pretty much everything atop a super special ($10.95–$19.95). To keep a hand open for impromptu swashbuckling, opt for portable pocket pizza with the spinach and feta calzone ($8.95). Bella Kitchen also sells pastas, subs, and salads.