At Intermezzo Pizzeria and Cafe, brothers Branko and Djordje Avramovic draw patrons to their European–style eatery with fresh, hand-tossed pizzas and Serbian family recipes passed down from their grandmother. Their kitchen contains no freezer or microwave, ensuring the staff cooks all meats and melts all toy army soldiers by hand. In keeping with this commitment to freshness, they also grow their own herbs and create their own mozzarella, bread, and pastas from scratch. These top-notch ingredients assemble in dishes such as Balkan-style pizzas stuffed with ham and sour cream and eggplant musaka, which guests can devour on an outdoor patio overlooking Charlotte's skyline.
At the heart of Hawthorne's New York Pizza & Bar is a ball of dough. Over the past 10 years at seven locations, chefs use this dough to craft a seemingly infinite number of unique pies, including a special white pizza topped with ricotta cream sauce and mozzarella. But they also use it to create another kind of treat: garlic knots. These oven-baked bites are glazed with a seasoned garlic sauce, and since they're an appetizer, guests can start meals by munching on them instead of gnawing idly on the table. In addition to its main menu, Hawthorne's also boasts a lengthy gluten-free selection, which features many of the same entrees as well as a couple gluten-free beers.
Revolution Ale House House keeps its menu local by relying on fresh local pork and hand-selected produce, as well as stocking North Carolina craft beers. Revolution affirms its commitment to fresh food through the Italian phrase "Produzione Propria"?meaning "made in-house"?on its logo, along with an image of Demeter, the Greek goddess of harvest. All dishes are made from scratch on the premises, from the freshly baked pizza dough to the Mediterranean-style dishes such as eastern BBQ pork sandwiches, mushroom fettuccine, and housemade fresh mozzarella and focaccia bread. New beers are added to the mix weekly.
Toppers Pizza uses house-made dough whipped up fresh every day to create its eclectic selection of 19 different house-specialty pizzas. Conventional pies such as the Ultimate Pepperoni Topper complement creative pizzas such as the Chicken Tuscano Topper, decorated with spinach, garlic-roasted tomatoes, feta cheese, and grilled chicken. All Toppers’ pizzas are capable of peaceful cohabitation with Topperstix, breadsticks covered in cheese, garlic butter, and toppings that range from bacon to taco meat. Eaters can amplify any 14-inch house pizza by turning it into a TallBoy—a pizza built upon a Topperstix crust. Both Toppers locations are open until at least 1 a.m. seven days a week, making them a convenient way to fuel up for a long night of berating constellations.
With more than 20 California-style pizzas and other sumptuous Italian eats on its menu, Wolfman Pizza satisfies the hunger of pizza lovers and bloodthirsty shape-shifters alike. Using freshly baked dough, house-made tomato sauce, and daily-shredded whole-milk mozzarella, Wolfman Pizza cooks up tasty specialty pies such as the Greek-inspired Mykonos pizza ($15 for 12-inch), a Homeric ode of roma tomatoes, red onions, Greek olives, capers, and feta. Construct a stairway of Italian sausage and black olives in your gullet with the Led Zeppelin pie ($7.49 for 8-inch). Or concoct a personalized vision of pizza perfection by festooning a create-your-own pie ($6 and up) with nontraditional toppings such as black-bean sauce, gruyere cheese, and scallions.
For more than 15 years, Picasso’s Sports Cafe has sated stomachs with freshly tossed pizza dough, house-made sauce, and 13 kinds of award-winning wings. Cold beers clink as cheese melts inside burgers, calzones, and on top of pizza pies the way flame-torch-wielding angels melt frozen hearts. More than a dozen high-definition TVs and a massive movie screen flicker with sports games during meals, plus live trivia and free shuffleboard step in to entertain where athletes leave off.