Andolini’s Pizza has earned continuing popular acclaim from readers of the Charleston City Paper, who rank it the best New York Style Pizza in the city year after year. The Andolini’s team bakes dough, grates cheese, and makes sauces in-house. They sell hand-tossed pizzas by the slice alongside whole pies festooned with traditional toppings such as Italian sausage, anchovies, and mushrooms. Avid patrons can also purchase an Andolini’s t-shirt to proclaim their allegiance to the restaurant, or simply smear a slice of cheese and pepperoni directly onto their own shirt.
Domino's recently reformulated its pizza recipe, which puts the buyer in command of a plentitude of pie-personalizing possibilities. Test the sturdiness of a hand-tossed thin crust with mounds of hearty marinara, ham, chicken, green peppers, black olives, and spinach, or fill a deep-dish foundation with alfredo sauce, bacon, onions, jalapeños, fresh mushrooms, and banana peppers. While delicious design options stretch into infinity like a taffy pull in a black hole, the eatery's specialty pizzas make choosing more manageable. Peruse pies like the MeatZZa Feast, which is piled high with pepperoni, ham, italian sausage, beef, and extra mozzarella, and the Pacific Veggie, a flashy West Coast–concoction of roasted red peppers, spinach, onions, mushrooms, tomatoes, black olives, feta, mozzarella, and provolone.
Bocci's pleases palates day and night with gourmet preparations of Italian flavors. Midday meal grabbers can get things going with focaccia and artichoke dip ($6.99), or opt for the classic simplicity of a Caesar salad, which, like the real Caesars, rules its empire with the help of tangy dressing and herbed croutons ($5.99). For more substantial lunch fare, look to an assortment of sandwiches, such as a chicken-pesto panini with sun-dried-tomato mozzarella ($8.99), or call for a calzone (starting at $7.99) stuffed to your precise specifications. Bocci's dinner menu ups the starter selection with options such as arancini, delicious and ready-to-juggle rice balls packed with sausage, cheeses, and peppers ($8.59), and adds entrees such as herb-coated Tuscan duck, which is seared and plated with parmesan risotto ($19.99 for a full serving).
South of Philly Pizzeria tosses together sandwiches, pasta, and eponymous pies using hand-lobbed crusts and 100%-fresh ingredients to create its menu of Italian ingenuity. Its inventory of signature pizzas ($11–$19) spans from the ferociously carnivorous “T-Rex” to the “Apollo,” a not-so-mythical mélange of spinach, olives, fresh tomato, and feta cheese on a roasted-garlic-butter base. Fans of overturned edibles will covet the calzone and create-a-zone (starting at $7.50), while pasta twirlers can tackle the chicken cacciatore ($8) or the Philly-inspired phettucini alfredo, which exudes brotherly love ($7.75). Each of the savory steak sandwiches is fortified with a half pound of shaved rib eye, and comes with a plethora of topping choices—from the provolone, fried onions, sweet peppers, and mushrooms of Da Bomb to the marinara and mozzarella of the pizza-steak sandwich, the Italian equivalent of Frankenstein’s monster ($7.50 each).
The chefs at Mia Pomodori manually pack meatballs and hand-shred fresh blocks of cheese to craft an authentic Italian menu of specialty pizzas, sandwiches, and calzones. On the carne pizza ($12.99–$21.99), skillful slices of pepperoni, sausage, ham, and meatballs surf a tomato-sauce tide near shores of hand-kneaded dough. Whole plum tomatoes cozy up to mozzarella and parmesan cheeses inside the house-special calzone’s flaky crust ($7.99), and the Not Your Usual BLT ($6.99) showers shaved ham, turkey, and bacon with a deluge of melted mozzarella, provolone, or swiss cheese. Patrons can snuggle in between Mia Pomodori’s bright-red walls adorned with vintage posters, or traipse outside to share their generously sized meal with restive flagstone spirits on the outdoor patio.