The River Café Trattoria serves wood-burning brick-oven pizza and fresh Italian favorites in a family-friendly atmosphere. Start dinner with a taste of Tuscany antipasti, a culinary welcoming committee of fresh mozzarella, sopressata, artichokes, roasted peppers, fried eggplant, and Sicilian olives ($12). Inside the fiery brick oven, quattro stagionia pizzas bake and bubble around a mouth-watering compilation of prosciutto, artichokes, mushrooms, and black olives ($15.95 for a 14” pie). A classic margherita hits the fresh-basil spot ($12.95 for a 14” pizza), though fork-holding green thumbs may find their herb fix with the gnocchi al pesto ($13). Glasses of fresh juices ($3.50) or canned colas ($1.30) can be poured directly into gullets or mixed together with bring-your-own beverages. A pizza alla Nutella topped with bananas, strawberries, and powdered sugar ($10) finishes the meal if traditional Italian deserts such as tiramisu ($4) don’t get there first.
Que Pasta's chefs have a simple recipe for success?using high-quality Durham flour, they create their own fresh pastas every morning. The ravioli, gnocchi, penne, and tortellini are created in small batches to ensure quality, and they go on to support housemade sauces ranging from sweet brown sherry sauce to spicy cream of leek sauce. They also might hoist a seafood medley, pan-seared chicken, or tender veal.
Those who wish to take the pasta creations home don't even have to attempt to leave any noodles on their plates?Que Pasta actually sells the housemade pastas for people to make at home. These include a selection of seasonal pastas, such as ravioli stuffed with roasted turkey, cranberries, and walnuts, and pumpkin ravioli with tiny candles inside. In addition to a full menu, Que Pasta now serves wine and beer.
Slinger's Sports Restaurant's head chef, Nick Tokarski, presides over an eclectic menu of casual and upscale fare, filling mouths in a convivial atmosphere illumined by 11 high-definition TVs. For appetizers, dining companions divvy up a dozen steamed littleneck clams simmered with roasted garlic, bacon, and white wine, or prime palates with the zesty Sichuan sauce coating Ray’s spicy shrimp. Built upon a homemade flatbread foundation, the Chef’s pie pizza pairs melty cheeses with tomato sauce, wild mushrooms, red onions, and fresh basil, fostering an ideal avenue for flaunting your outfit’s built-in bib. Dre's burger stacks 8 ounces of Black Angus with guacamole and chipotle mayo and tames tongues with a flavor lasso made of jalapeños and jack and cheddar cheeses. At the Mac Bar, noshers craft macaroni masterpieces from three cheesy styles and a cornucopia of varied toppings, from hard-boiled eggs to meatballs to blackened shrimp.
Pleasant Road Spa is a haven of relaxation and rejuvenation. Within, a team of aestheticians use renowned Dermaologica products to perform more than a dozen facial treatments, including specialized services for men and expectant mothers. Adventurous clients can dabble in advanced treatments such as glycolic peels or microdermabrasion, which intensively exfoliates the face to dissolve signs of aging or soreness from a staring contest with a raccoon. Nearby, nail techs execute soothing pedicures laced with green-tea and peppermint essential oils. Excessively hirsute guests can get un-hirsuted with an array of waxing services for the face and body.
For 30 years, Pizzeria Diamici has tossed its piping-hot pies and sauced its flavorful Italian fare from the same spot on Hackensack Street. The mouthwatering menu ushers its pleasing pizzas into being the moment they’re ordered, saving them from the complexion-mottling scourge of heat lamps. Gourmet and specialty pies—such as the sun-dried tomato, mushrooms, basil, and mozzarella pie or the spicy, meat-strewn four-alarm ($13.95–$15.95)—arrive loaded with ingredients fresh enough to garner a four-scold rating from the U.S. Department of Schoolmarms. The pizzeria also stuffs its calzones to the seams with savory cheeses, rendering them hefty enough to ensure that any food fight ends in mutually assured destruction.
Gianna’s offers a menu full of upscale, old-world Italian fare, reviving tired taste buds with subtle sauces and precisely prepared pastas. Each dinner entree serves two people, but single orders are also available. Split the vodka-sauce-laced penne with a dinner date ($25.95), or share an order of lasagna with your invisible nemesis ($26.95). Rigatoni with broccoli rabe and sausage fills bureaucratic meat quotas ($29.95), and eggplant parmigiana pleases pairs of plantivores ($23.95). A wine list is also available, so you can pair your meal with a bottle of 2008 Danzante pinot grigio ($25) instead of the FDA-recommended 12-pack of Capri Sun.