The tasty array of casual Italian tastes at Bearno's will warm bellies while the friendly neighborhood service warms tomato-shaped hearts. Appetizers such as spicy boneless chicken wings ($7.49 for a large) and garlic cheese stix ($7.49) lay the foundation for a robustly-flavored repast, while fresh salads ($3.99–$10.99) cleanse the palate in preparation for savory sandwiches ($7.39–$8.99), build-your-own or pre-conceived specialty pizzas ($8.99–$37.99), and classic pasta dishes. Wrap paws around a slice of Mama Bearno's pizza, loaded with sausage, pepperoni, mushrooms, onions, green peppers, olives, and mozzarella ($17.99 for a medium), or mumble a mouthful of chicken parmesan with a side of mostaccioli ($7.99). If you are having trouble deciding between menu categories, opt for a hybrid open-faced pizza hoagie ($7.39), or blindfold your index finger and point.
Every day at all of El Nopal’s locations, cooks whip up fresh batches of salsa, chips, and beans. The sauces and sides accent chicken or beef chimichangas, handmade tamales, and nachos smothered in cheese. All El Nopal locations offer complimentary chips and salsa with every meal, and some locations have outdoor seating areas. Performances by live bands at select locations serve as a pleasant distraction from meals, unlike a judge with highfalutin ideas about not eating in court.
In 1978, brothers Eugene and John Jetts lent their name to the sign above their pizza shop in Sterling Heights, Michigan. In the more than 30 years that followed, they’ve lost one of the Ts but gained more than 200 franchises across the country. Jet’s Pizza churns out signature pies in hearty deep-dish form. The eight-corner deep-dish style lets each member of a dining octet enjoy a slice of corner crust without fearing the paper cuts inherent in triangle slices. After loading pizzas with heaps of meats and veggies, guests have the liberty of flavorizing their crust for free, choosing from eight options such as garlic, sesame seed, Cajun, or poppy seed. To augment pies, Jet's chefs whip up triple-cheese turbo sticks filled with mozzarella, cheddar, and romano as well as regular and boneless wings draped in hot or sweet sauces.
Pregame with spinach artichoke dip (4.99) or a hearty helping of fried pickle chips, hand-breaded dills fried to a crisp and served with peppercorn ranch dressing or a Cajun horseradish dip ($3.99). Most of the thin-crust pizzas, salads, chicken, steaks, pastas, burgers, and sandwiches on Aspen's menu cost less than $10. Flavorful meaty dishes include a chili-rubbed pork tenderloin trio (three pork medallions wrapped in bacon and grilled and bathed in honey lime dressing, $9.99) and Hawaiian-style grilled chicken topped with a fresh grilled pineapple ($7.99). Aspen Creek's pan-seared salmon ($10.99) is hand cut, superbly seasoned, honey-glazed, and totally unable to travel upstream in search of superior gold prospecting.
Named for the Roman goddess of banquets and overseer of feasts, Edesia Gardens lives up to its lofty moniker with continental lunch fare and an extensive Sunday brunch buffet. When they aren’t ferrying trays back and forth from special events, the restaurant’s wait staff lines noontime tables with sandwiches, burgers, and salads stacked with imported brie, sliced fruit, and homemade sauces and dressings. A chef-manned breakfast station serves as the centerpiece of the Sunday brunch buffet, where guests load their plates with eggs and waffles cooked to order. While indulging in a sweet or savory pastry, guests can question their hosts about the restaurant’s banquet facilities, which can handle parties of up to 170 for weddings, birthdays, and school-wide games of capture the flag.
The pizza-slingers at Papa John’s build their pies with fresh-dough crusts composed of high-protein flour and filtered water that are hand tossed, then baked to a golden brown. Every pizza comes covered with vine-ripened tomato sauce and 100% mozzarella cheese, and can be strewn with a cornucopia of toppings, from locally sourced green peppers and onions to beef, ham and spicy Italian sausage. The Hawaiian-barbecue-chicken pie hoards all bacon, onions, grilled chicken, and pineapple within a five-mile radius, and the pepperoni-and-sausage-topped John’s Favorite is the only pie to never have sat in the kitchen’s time-out chair. Chefs dust parmesan cheese and garlic on fluffy breadsticks, and lather wings in honey-chipotle, spicy, or traditional barbecue sauce. The Cinnapie dessert seals meals with a gathering of apple, cinnamon, and icing sweeter than a kitten in sugar-coated pajamas. Enter your zip code into the online menu to see a full list of prices for pies baking in your area.
Choices Yogurt Bar lays out a spread of 15 healthy frozen yogurts and 50 toppings and keeps health-savvy patrons informed by posting the treats' nutrition stats online. Tongues travel across a varied landscape of yogurt flavors⎯from Blueberry Acai Original Tart to smooth and creamy Country Vanilla⎯each packed with beneficial live cultures that aid in digestion, help reduce cholesterol, and introduce stomach to opera. Cups weigh in at the counter as patrons check email or skateboard the web over the shop's free WiFi.