Each of Pasta Nostra's pizzas begins with hand-stretched dough, fresh, house-made tomato sauce, and a hearty helping of mozzarella cheese. From there, the possibilities are vast: square Sicilian or round, thin New York-style crust, pesto or white sauce, and topping choices that include prosciutto, roasted red peppers, and asparagus. Just like snowflakes, pasta mixed with ricotta, sausage, and seafood comes in eight different shapes, and focaccia bread clasps sizzling fillings in a slate of paninis. In keeping with the restaurant's spirit of options and inclusivity, Pasta Nostra especially welcomes families with a kids' menu and family-style dinners.
Under the guidance of pie professionals Iris and Mike Wasserman, Pizza Stop's chefs handcraft batches of dough daily for pizzas in between artfully assembling subs, sandwiches, and pastas. The bacon pizza ($8.75 for 10", $14.75 for 16") rouses slumbering taste buds with a meaty wake-up call and the white pizza ($7.75 for 10", $12.75 for 16") eschews pigmentation for a savory, snow-hued canvas. Mouths can embark upon a Hellenic sojourn through the pita-swaddled chicken-souvlaki sandwich ($5.95), speckled with feta cheese, homemade ziti dressing, and tiny tomato Minotaurs. The steak-and-cheese sub ($5.75 for 7") quiets howling stomach sirens with a slab of 5-ounce rib eye and pastas such as lasagna ($8.95) toboggan down the esophagus. Diners can feel the breeze ripple through their knuckle hair in the outdoor eating area, weather and opportunistic clouds permitting.
Every pizza at zpizza is freshly prepared, hand thrown, gently coaxed into the oven using soft birdcalls and pheromone trails, and fire-baked to crispy perfection. The dough is prepared fresh daily from 100% certified-organic wheat, and z is also happy to offer certified organic and gluten-free crusts, sating the pizza desire of the allergic, dieters, and wheat sympathizers. Toppings include award-winning Wisconsin skim mozzarella, MSG-free pepperoni, certified-organic tomato sauce, additive-free sausage, and fresh produce. Try a large ZBQ pizza (with barbecue sauce, mozzarella, barbecue chicken, roasted pepper, red onion, tomato, cilantro, and sweet corn; $20.95 for a large) or a chicken curry and yam rustica (with mozzarella, curry chicken, yam, mango chutney, raisin, and cilantro; $8.95). Vegans can delight in the Berkeley vegan, a faux-cheese veggie pizza (with marinara, veggie burger crumbles, zucchini, tomato, mushroom, red onion, and bell pepper; $10.50 for a small), and traveling tongues can sate their wanderlust with a mouthwatering Moroccan rustica (with pesto, mozzarella, roasted eggplant, feta cheese, caramelized onion, and pine nut; $8.95).
[[m:####Il Pinito Trattoria
Miniature electric chandeliers help illuminate the crimson walls in Il Pinito Trattoria's dining room, which proudly announces its Old World roots with displays of wicker-wrapped chianti bottles and grape-vine trim along the ceiling. Back in the kitchen, the cooks demonstrate their passion for Italian traditions by rolling homemade meatballs from ground veal and crowning platefuls of toothsome pasta with spicy marinara and alfredo sauces. Their pizzas emerge from ovens with cheese that bubbles like a jacuzzi full of cheese or laden with such toppings as eggplant, sausage, and mushrooms.
Looking beyond a strict Italian focus, the restaurant also hosts live Latin jazz jam sessions on Thursday nights.:m]]
With an emphasis on distinctive, Mediterranean-inspired ingredients, Pizza Tempo's pizzas stand apart from ordinary pies like a furry sports mascot at a state dinner. The pizzeria’s pie-pitchers throw toppings including grilled zucchini, corn, caramelized onions, gyro meat, and pistachio mortadella onto hand-tossed build-your-own margherita pizzas. Choose from a medley of gourmet specialty pies, such as the Tempo special pizza, with sucuk (a turkish beef sausage) joining fresh tomatoes, artichokes, olives, and mozzarella cheese in a circle of camaraderie, or opt for the meat lovers’ option, piling spicy beef franks, salami, meatball, pepperoni, and mozzarella cheese atop a crisp crust ($11–$18). Meanwhile, Pizza Tempo’s boat-shaped pides change the shape of dining, carrying edible cargo including eggs, lamb, and feta cheese to gastronomic ports of call ($8–$10).