Since 1941, Dickey’s has been slow-smoking USDA Prime cuts nightly, slathering them with family-recipe barbecue sauce, and pairing them with a variety of homestyle sides. The dine-in or takeout menu boasts nine hickory-infused meats, including southern pulled pork, sliced or chopped beef brisket, and spicy cheddar sausage, which can nestle comfortably inside sandwiches such as the pickle and onion-stuffed Big Barbecue ($4.75, $7.25 with two sides) or fly on breadless wings into the one-meat plate ($9.25), loaded with a full portion of meat, two sides, and a roll. Side dishes attempt to steal the meat cabaret spotlight with high-kicking vittles including creamy coleslaw, barbecue beans, and mac ‘n’ cheese ($2 each). A giant stuffed baker with meat ($6.25) paints a fluffy canvas of baked potato with broad strokes of smoky meat, and the Picnic Pack ($22) lets groups of three to four diners choreograph synchronized chewing with its 1 pound of meat, two medium sides, four rolls, and barbecue sauce.
DoubleDave's dough-slingers adorn handmade crusts with house-made sauce and more than 20 topping options that populate a menu of specialty pizzas, stromboli, and stuffed rolls. Every day, at least two batches of fresh dough are hand-tossed into edible frisbees destined to be coated in quality cheeses, delectable meats, or fresh veggies sliced by hand or carved by laser vision. Blaze a new taste trail with custom pizzas ($6.49–$13.99/pizza, depending on size; $1.09–$1.70/topping, depending on size), or bite into specialty pies such as the classic veggie pizza, which welcomes vine-ripened California tomatoes, italian sweet peppers, and other delectables to new homes atop smoked provolone and a honey whole-wheat crust. The buffalo chicken's spicy wing sauce converges with cool ranch dressing alongside mozzarella and chicken strips ($13.99/12", $16.99/15", $19.99/18"). Pepperoni rolls envelop the eponymous meat in dough and smoked provolone, busting through hard-earned gameday appetites or serving as a replacement ball during games of paper football.
While the heart of Johnny Carino's menu is rooted in genuine Italian traditions, forward-thinking creativity has birthed what they like to call their signature dishes. Led by executive chef Chris Peitersen, the seasoned kitchen staff blends fresh ingredients along with extra time to create high-quality preparations. Diners will find entrees such as 16-layer lasagna with made-from-scratch sauce, and pizzas made with home-baked crust. Other signature choices include the all-natural beef tuscan ribeye, baked stuffed mushrooms topped with house lemon basil cream sauce, and tiramisu made from the ground up. Entrees can be paired any selection from Carino's extensive wine list and drink menu.
At Brianna's Pizza, it's possible to eat pizza for every meal without growing bored of the same flavors. That's because the restaurant's cooks bake a wide variety of pies, from breakfast pizzas to dessert pizzas. They also pile traditional deep-dish pizzas with savory toppings such as buffalo chicken or shrimp. Try your meal paired with housemade cheese bread or saucy chicken wings.
Continuing the Italian tradition of pizza al taglio (pizza by the slice), Pizzeria Venti hand-tosses a handful of oven-baked, circular pies teeming with trans-fat-free toppings. Like a repertory theater, Venti's homespun crust acts as a stage for more than 20 pizza performances. The pillowy crusts are pedestals for varieties such as house-made italian sausage, seasoned with fennel, fresh basil, and herbs ($3.50 for a slice) or chicken vesuvio which touts a roasted breast of chicken, mushrooms, black olives and garlic ($4.75 per slice). Though pizza prevails as Venti's main attraction, the menu is also stocked with baked pastas ($6.50+), salads ($6+), and soups ($3+) to create a culinary lineup that is more well-rounded than a reconstructed Humpty Dumpty.
The cupcake selection at Gigi's Cupcakes upgrades handmade sweets to gallery status with swirling, farm-fresh creamy butter, well-placed fruit and nut selections, and decadent chocolate sauces that look inviting enough to swim in if they weren't infested with gummi-sharks. Well-prepared customers can check the daily menu for the most appropriate currently available cupcake incarnations, including gourmet concoctions such as white midnight magic, a dark-chocolate cake studded with dark-chocolate chips, topped with white cream-cheese frosting, and then re-topped with chocolate chips. To refresh the palate and confuse the tongue, pack a picnic basket with Gigi's orange dreamsicle and cherry limeade cupcakes and enjoy them outside on warm, sunny day.