Usually to get into the Hall of Fame, you have to hit 400 home runs or crush an opposing quarterback a hundred times. The only crushing likely to be seen at Maria's Cafe & Italian Restaurant, however, is that of helpless garlic. Nonetheless, the Sicilian eatery found itself a recipient of NBC12’s Restaurant Report Hall of Fame Award in 2009. The accolade might be a product of its decor’s Mediterranean-art deco design, or it might be a celebration of the recipes cooked by its Sicily-born owners.
From baked pasta entrees such as manicotti to house specialties like the wild mushroom ravioli, the menu unites classic Italian ingredients. Wraps, pizza, paninis, and calzones complement the core offerings, and a wine and beer menu ensures no one at the table resorts to drinking from their purse—the ideal location for a bag of wine.
Operating under the belief that food and celebration should go hand-in-hand, the lively staff at Antonio's Ristorante and Wine Bar makes sure that each visit feels like a party. Diners can toast the day with glasses of award-winning wine while enjoying classic Italian dishes such as veal parmesan and pasta carbonara. Ristorante Antonio’s chefs also festoon hand-tossed and deep-dish Sicilian pizzas with a selection of nearly 30 toppings, which include artichoke hearts, pepperoncini peppers, and calamari rings that diners can use to hold back their hair for hands-free eating.
Italian and Middle Eastern dishes share table space at G's Pizza & Grill, a restaurant with a relaxing, family-oriented ambiance. Seated at tables draped with red tablecloths, diners savor specialty pizzas and pasta dishes along with gyros, curry, and kebabs. Some dishes feature a fusion of Italian and Middle Eastern flavors, such as the greek pizza, which comes topped with feta cheese and lamb gyro meat.
Overlooking the James River, Sensi delights the senses, serving modern Italian fare in a lush and luxurious atmosphere. Modern artwork decorates the warm walls of the chophouse, and comfortable, elegant plush chairs surround red-clothed tables so they can’t escape. The menu features a variety of fragrant appetizers, salads, pastas, and entrees to enchant taste buds and stomach branches. The warm and dimly lit round bar showcases an ample selection of specialty cocktails, beers, and other lust-worthy libations.
Although tomatoes top the grocery list each week at Twisted Tomato, the pizzeria's most prominent ingredient might be cheese. It's melted inside crispy pizza rolls and calzones, layered across 7- or 14-inch grinders, and sprinkled over hand-spun specialty pizzas such as the Maui Wowi, which is generously topped with ham, pineapple, and plane tickets to Hawaii. Additionally, parmesan, provolone, and blue cheese abound on Twisted Tomato's salads, and cheesecake makes a sweet ending for a dairy-driven meal.
The skilled chefs at Roma’s Italian Restaurant craft family recipe sauces and dough from scratch daily while boasting an extensive menu of made-to-order pizzas, pastas and golden paninis. Patrons can pick up some calamari rings ($6.99) to hold up a shower curtain or enjoy warm, oven-baked garlic bread blanketed with bubbling cheese ($5). Skirt fashion norms by dressing a pizza in white after Labor Day with hot cheese layers and garlic ($6.75–$13.75) or with a steaming helping of rich fettuccine alfredo served with shrimp, chicken, or broccoli ($12.25–$15.25). After playing a long game of hide-and-seek inside a mannequin factory, enjoy the enchanting veal marsala sautéed with tender sliced veal in marsala wine with a slew of fresh mushrooms ($16.95).