Scoop wranglers at Piccomolo fashion fresh batches of gelato daily from all-natural ingredients such as fresh milk, which imbues the dessert with lower fat, calorie, and sugar content than its heavy-cream-laced archnemesis, ice cream. A glass display case houses a rotating display of 30 milk-based, fruit-based, and no-sugar-added gelatos selected from Piccomolo’s roster of 150 flavors such as peanut-butter cup, blackberry, and hazelnut. Tykes can finger-paint portraits of their favorite Winnie the Pooh characters with flavorful pigments from kid-size portions ($2.89), and adults collect two to four flavors in single small, medium, or large cups ($3.99–$5.99). Alternatively, customers can choose 6-or 8-inch gelato cakes in signature flavors such as fudge brownie and turtle cheesecake, or create custom cakes for special occasions such as birthday dinners or traditional Arbor Day food fights.
The East Coast pizza purists at Paparazzi Pizzeria pop from-scratch dough topped with house-made sauce into stone deck ovens shipped straight from New York. In true Big Apple fashion, Paparazzi Pizzeria's signature pies stretch up to 18-inches across ($21.99)—the to-scale size of Barbie's pinkie were she to come to life. Try the Pappa's flavorful soiree—chicken, spinach, and roma tomatoes in garlic cloaks dancing on a golden-crust floor (10", $9.99; 18", $21.99), or construct an edible mosaic with custom pies (10", $7.99; 18", $13.99) piled with your choice of 20 toppings ($0.79–$1.99 each). Pasta dishes ($6.99–$8.99) and borough-bred strombolis ($9.99) stuffed with steak, sausage, and street smarts round out the menu.
At their core, Aly's Apples are just like any other. In this case, it's what's on the outside that really counts. Their self-professed "over the top" gourmet caramel apples put boring old caramel apples to shame. Each day, they're hand dipped in smooth homemade caramel before receiving drizzles of chocolate and toppings that range from dark chocolate and pecans to marshmallows, M&Ms, and english toffee molded into a kitchen sink.
The sub-making professionals at Quiznos design a menu stacked with an expansive selection of speedy snacks, including soups and salads. A fleet of classic subs ($4.49–$7.29) waits to dive into mouths, as do flatbread sammies ($3) and chopped salads ($3.19–$5.99). For a trimmer sandwich take, try the Torpedo ($4) or Bullet ($3) sizes—longer, leaner baguettes packed with yummy stuffings, from the pesto turkey's mozzarella, turkey, and basil pesto to the Italian's heaping piles of ham, salami, capicola, and pepperoni. Avoid deathbed laments to your increasingly exasperated butlers with today’s Groupon to Quiznos, providing a dependable lunch option, park-bench dinner, or appropriate meal to be seen eating at a stoplight.
Since its inception in 1974, Birraporetti's has melded Italian cooking with a traditional Irish-pub atmosphere, serving hand-tossed pizzas baked in their stone oven alongside robust Irish coffee and spirits. CBS Houston highlighted its oven-fired pizzas as some of the best in the city, specifically lauding the house bianco pizza for eschewing traditional ingredients such as tomato sauce and shredded copies of the Mona Lisa. The kitchen remains open until midnight to accommodate late-night cravings, yet the chefs still rise in time to serve Sunday jazz brunches replete with made-to-order waffles, omelets, and desserts served amid live jazz performances.