In 2006, Paul Cataldo proved his pizza street cred by competing with the World Pizza Champions in Salsomaggiore, Italy. Paul and his family are first-generation Italians, and they have made it their mission to bring their Old World, southern Italian recipes stateside with Antonio’s Italian Ristorante. In the central dining room, sponge-painted beige walls and red clay tiles evoke a rustic Tuscan villa. Crisp tablecloths populate with fish and veal entrees and an array of gourmet pizzas, such as the U.S. Pizza Team's award-winning rosemary pie. After spearing forks through saucy pastas, guests can kindle romance on the outdoor patio with a bottle of wine, or kindle the tablecloth by aggressively rubbing two breadsticks together.
The hardwood lanes of Country Club Lanes invite amateurs and pros alike to wreak havoc on unsuspecting pins seven nights a week. The alley features bumpers for younger athletes and hosts special glow bowling for those looking to mix up their game or discover new T-shirt lint constellations under the shine of black lights. Strike after strike, spare after spare, players can refuel at the onsite snack stand, which distributes ice-cold refreshments and lighter handheld fare.
The nature of the seasoning that gives Whiskey Dick's Five Star Dive Bar’s handmade, never-frozen beef patties such a bold flavor will forever remain a kitchen secret. The origin of the 5-Star Stack burger’s name, however, is anything but secret: the towering structure consists of two grilled cheese sandwiches that bookend two patties crowned with grilled onions and bacon. Along with the behemoth entree, Whiskey Dick’s menu includes bar classics such as mozzarella sticks hand-dipped in housemade breading, as well as a half-pound ground beef burrito rolled in a jalapeño cheddar tortilla.
To complement the meaty dishes that emerge from its kitchen, Whiskey Dick’s hosts entertainment every night, including football games broadcast on a 108-inch HD screen. Open jams let musicians gather for impromptu melody making, live bands rock out every weekend, and acoustic musicians play after-dinner sets that soothe stomachs more effectively than the nightly lullabies you sing to your navel.
Whenever an adult purchases an entree at select restaurants, a child younger than age 12 dines free thanks to The Kids Club Card—an innovative pass that helps families save money when eating out. Participating eateries, such as Applebee’s, Dairy Queen, and T.G.I. Friday's, offer a variety of tastes for patrons who might have otherwise avoided restaurant prices by staying home and eating porridge. Local charities also benefit from the pass, receiving a cut of its proceeds when it's sold in their communities.
After spending his childhood absorbing the finer points of pie forging from his father, Darren "DC" Cornell ventured forth on his own to build a reputation preparing pizzas with homemade sauces, never-frozen pepperoni, and fresh, top-shelf ingredients. The pizza baron and his crew melt a signature four-cheese blend over hand-tossed, thin-crust, and Chicago-style pies, christening each discus with patriotic names that celebrate institutions of the United States and laws that allow setting off fireworks indoors. Toppings such as real italian sausage, smoked meats, imported capicola ham, and fresh veggies join with a mélange of sauces and creamy cheeses to grace savory pies and calzones. Hearty sub sandwiches, light wraps, crispy salads, and classic Italian favorites leave diners as satisfied as a snowman swimming in the Arctic.
Rulli’s culinarians dish up pizzas, pasta, and seafood dishes born from recipes central to southern Italy, serving patrons in their 25-year-old dining area at their Middlebury location or at their newest spot in Elkhart. A range of appetizers, such as 12 broaster-style chicken wings accompanied by dunk tanks of barbecue, ranch, or vidalia onion sauce, pave the way for heartier main courses or Stooge-level food fights. Velvety ricotta, parmigiana, romano, and provonello cheeses comprise the lasagna’s melty strata, which trundle italian sausage toward forks on fragrant avalanches of marinara and signature sauce. Rulli’s pizza, which has been served at the Elkhart County Fair for two decades, bristles with inventive toppings such as spaghetti and meatballs.
Vivid Italian artwork and murals from local artist Rocky Weaver pepper the dining room, a delightful prelude to the neighboring Rulli's Bella Luna sports bar’s fun neon signage, clacking pool balls, flickering high-definition TVs, and live music. Foam-flecked taps line the full-service bar boasting a selection of robust wines, which nicely complement rowdy bands wailing or grape stomping live atop a well-appointed stage.