After visiting Ella's Wood Fired Pizza, a reviewer from the Washington City Paper went over the moon for its signature crust. Baked in the eatery's namesake oven, Ella's Neapolitan-style thin crusts are "perfectly crisp with a hint of smoke," while touches of olive oil and sea salt lend "tremendous flavor." Of course, the fixings atop that flavorful foundation are equally swoon-worthy. Ella's cooks handcraft nearly 20 specialty pies, from the di mare's pairing of pesto and shrimp to the bosco's medley of roasted tomatoes and roasted-garlic puree. The culinary team also yields decisions to diners, who can customize pizzas with 40-plus ingredients?including fingerling potatoes and vegan soy cheese?along with the option for a gluten-free crust.
Alongside pizzas, the kitchen staff specializes in traditional and creative Italian dishes, from mushroom ravioli with roasted red pepper sauce to risotto balls filled with gooey mozzarella. Plentiful beer and wine options complement meals, which unfold in a cozy interior with rustic Italian touches such as stone columns and a corner reserved for napping gondoliers.
Located a few steps from the C&O Canal in the heart of Georgetown, this upscale eatery specializes in authentic Southern Italian cuisine and Neapolitan-style pizza. The sleek, modern dining room is accented by vibrant blues, while the pizza kitchen and wood-fired oven imported from Naples are situated up front for all to see. Pies are made within strict accordance of Verace Pizza Napolitana regulations, which require the use of imported mozzarella di bufala, San Marzano tomatoes and ‰ÛÏ00‰Û� flour. While pizza is the main draw at Il Canale, the restaurant also features a full menu of Italian classics like gnocchi, spaghetti al pomodoro and chicken marsala. The ‰ÛÏterrazzo,‰Û� or rooftop patio, offers views of the canal and is a good choice on spring and summer evenings.
Pronounced ?AH-beets,? Pete?s New Haven Style Apizza sets itself apart from more familiar pie prototypes with a crunchy yet chewy, stone oven-cooked crust. Combining their roots in fine dining with a dedication to fresh and simple Italian cuisine, Pete?s chefs make the gluten-free pizza crust in-house each day and top pies with savory sauce and locally-sourced toppings that are farm-fresh, organic, or made in house.
Pete?s menu also encompasses fresh pastas including homemade lasagna and spaghetti Bolognese. The fortress of feasting also offers a variety of draft and bottled beers, eclectic d?cor, and oven doors that bark out patrons? names when they walk through the door.
Zorba’s Cafe, with its sea blue and white interior and its comprehensive Greek menu, offers a little taste of Greece in Dupont Circle. Prices are decidedly cheap as well, though the lack of true table service helps to keep costs down. Patrons order at the cash register, pay and then wait for their order to come up; it’s a simple process that just adds to the charm at Zorba’s. Dive into your yero (as they dub gyro here) plate or your mousaka, and the minutes you spent waiting at the counter for your order to be called will disappear in an instant. A number of allergy-aware, gluten-free and vegetarian options line the ample menu as well inside this two-level space. On temperate days, you can’t beat a seat on the outdoor patio.
It starts with dough made from scratch each day. Chefs continue the pizza-making process by ladling on sauce made in house from freshly peeled Italian tomatoes, basil, oregano, garlic, and a pinch of salt. Whole-milk mozzarella then melts around gyro meat, eggplant, sausage, and other toppings in the rippling heat of an oven. Washington Deli’s owners supervise the entire process, drawing on pizza expertise accumulated during formative years spent in New York. Their workers rush from the kitchen, carrying paninis, boxed lunches, and platters—including vegan and gluten-free options—to fuel workplace parties or collapse the flimsy tables of rival offices.
Aria Pizzeria & Bar alleviates daytime stress with an assortment of hearty happy-hour fare and drink specials served in a casual atmosphere boasting high-definition TVs and occasional live music. Large cheese and pepperoni pizzas ($12–$14) form an absorbent foundation for 16-ounce drafts of Stella Artois ($4) or a signature Dark n' Stormy cocktail ($5). Fill the gullet of a large group or a massive Super Soaker with a 60-ounce pitcher of on-tap Jose Cuervo margarita or Jeremiah Weed sweet tea and lemonade ($20 each) and relax in one of more than 100 outdoor seats in the Ronald Reagan Building courtyard patio. Customers that use their Groupon for Saturday-evening dinner can feast on forkfuls of baked lasagna ($9.75) or saw through the crusty exterior of a blackened-chicken sandwich with provolone cheese and aioli ($7.75). The eatery's sociable staff will also gladly validate your parking or decision to become a rodeo clown.