Erupting cheers herald hopeful high-fives as Magoo's Sports Grill's 30 televisions broadcast yet another touchdown. Or homerun. Or pads-off, trash-talking battle royal. Regardless, athletics spill from the bar's innumerable televisions, and the kitchen sates sports fans with a full menu of hearty sandwiches, specialty pizzas, and decadent desserts. Time-tested domestic beers from Coors and Budweiser welcome craft brews such as Stella Artois and Sierra Nevada to the beer-and-wine bar, where bartenders pour suds into 10-ounce glasses, 20-ounce schooners, and one-gallon pitchers that may also be used as a makeshift apple-bobbing bucket.
The Tudor-Craftsman façade of the 103-year-old Glen Tavern Inn has many claims to fame: the former headquarters of Union Oil, a onetime speakeasy, and host to stars such as John Wayne and Rin Tin Tin. However; today, it’s inhabited by Enzo's Italian Restaurant, whose chefs recreate classic Italian recipes. They churn out pastas such as Sicilian-style rigatoni with sausage and creamy marinara sauce or chicken cannelloni stuffed with spinach and ricotta. Exposed wooden beams crisscross the ceiling in the dining room, where each weekend diners can applaud live entertainment or join in by playing their spoons.
Five sauces. Three cheeses. Twenty-three toppings. Jax Pizza provides diners with numerous ways to customize anything from a personal pie to an extra-large pizza for the whole table or the hungry yeti back home. Other familiar classics such as wings, pasta dishes, and meatball sandwiches help round out the pizzeria's selection of family-friendly comfort foods?while a selection of 13 draft beers helps wash it all down. Seated at red booths located beneath crimson-red ductwork, groups can enjoy their meal while keeping an eye on eight HD flat-screen televisions that routinely play the day's biggest basketball, hockey, or football games, while kids can enjoy themselves at the arcade.
Odds are, if it's edible and it'll melt, it's somewhere on the menu at Custom Melt. Centering around inventive twists on classic grilled cheese, the menu offers up a wide variety of sandwiches lined with ingredients like slow-roasted pork, pastrami, or slow-roasted veggies?and, of course, cheese. There are also bowls of pasta and rich mac 'n' cheese, as well as new soups daily and a variety of salads, all complimented by a range of wines and craft beers to wash down bites.
Nunzio Donato Ciaraulo and his wife, Cristina, curate a menu of Old World dishes hailing all corner of Italy, from Venetian-style risotto to coils of tomato-kissed Neapolitan pastas. Though the offerings change regularly, diners can count on classics such as pizzas and pastas joined by a revolving assortment of roasted pork, tender veal, cooked-to-order steaks, and simmering seafood. Sweet teeth applaud louder than an ice-cream truck with subwoofers when they see the dessert menu, which lists traditional mealtime denouements including tiramisu, cannoli, and sorbets.
“It's the best pizza I’ve found in Los Angeles,” says comedian and recognized Italian Ray Romano about D'Amore's Ristorante & Pizzeria. He’s not the only star to fall for the authentic slices: owner Joe D’Amore has shipped his pies to destinations across Hollywood, including the set of Two and a Half Men and Jennifer Garner’s house. Whether he’s serving an A-lister or the average hungry citizen, Joe bakes all of his cheesy treats to-order inside a stationary brick oven or an innovative oven on wheels.
D’Amore’s traditional methods and tempting taste are a family legacy. Born and raised in an Italian family in Boston, Joe D’Amore grew up savoring his grandmother Mommanonna's handmade pizzas—a meal he would miss upon moving to California. Joe asked his grandmother to join him out west and show him the secrets to her trade, but when she pulled the pie out of the oven, something wasn't quiet right. Mommanonna immediately knew that the California water was sabotaging her famous thin crust, and urged Joe to bring water from Boston. Today, he takes the practice a step further, importing water from Italy along with olive oil, flour, and pizza wheels carved by Michelangelo.