Decorative bottles of olive oil perch atop Anna Marie’s display case filled with freshly-baked pizzas, lending a rustic Italian air to the cozy trattoria. Cooks crown these specialty pies and calzones with spinach, Bermuda onions, pepperoni, and hot cherry peppers, as well as whip up colorful plates of veal marsala and chicken or eggplant parmesan. They also crafts more than two dozen gourmet sandwiches named for celebrities, such as the Joe Pesci with roast beef, turkey, ham, and cole slaw, and the Michelangelo, whose recipe consisting of fresh mozzarella, arugula, and tomatoes is painstakingly painted on the ceiling.
Every week, the chefs at Primavera Pizza Bistro offer a different specialty pizza, tossing pies with imaginative combinations of gourmet toppings and flavorful sauces. But their day-to-day selection of pies is equally as inspired—a colorful array of crispy-crust creations such as the Spinach Supreme, the chicken-parmesan pizza, and the Mediterranean Classic, speckled with artichoke hearts and salami. Beyond pizzas, the skilled chefs whip up a variety of authentic Italian dishes, including creamy alfredo bowtie pasta, crunchy homemade meatball subs, and zesty lemon-pepper salmon.
In Italian, the word baci suggests love and affection. At Baci Trattoria, cooks instill their authentic Italian food with the utmost baci, whether seasoning pizza by the slice or stuffing calzones with fresh vegetables or sausage. Like Abraham Lincoln in a haberdashery, specialty pizzas enjoy a variety of toppings, from caprese salad to penne pasta, and everything from lobster ravioli to buffalo-chicken sandwiches round out the menu of entrees.
From the outside, Il Giardino Restaurant, Bar & Grill resembles an elegant house more than it does an Italian restaurant. A chandelier glows through arched picture windows, and Doric columns frame a stone porch. It’s an ideal space for a restaurant that stemmed from the owners’ passion for hosting family dinners around the kitchen table. To fuel those dinners, chefs prepare traditional Italian cuisine: they simmer four varieties of risotto, and toss pastas with simple sauces. They prepare veal scallopini five different ways, from a simple lemon-and-caper sauce to prosciutto and melted fontina demi-glace. The eatery has served these meals since 1986, and it underwent a renovation in 2003, so the decor is almost as fresh as the food.
Servers are happy to recommend selections from the ample wine list. Oenophiles can also inquire about off-list bottles that are hard to find or have been hunted to near-extinction for yacht christenings.
Beyond Tomato Pie of Morristown's French door façade, chefs mix fresh ingredients into a menu of signature pizzas and homemade Italian favorites. For starters, diced chicken and mozzarella cheese sing a duet in lightly fried balls of arborio rice served with marinara, or a chorus of Italian cheeses, meats, peppers, and beans rattle the antipasti platter with trilling operatic arias. To complement the Grandma pie's spread of gooey cheese and tomatoes over a crisp, rectangular crust, the circular tomato pie hosts hearty tomatoes and a selection of toppings ($2 each) such as artichokes, bacon, and sweet peppers. For dessert, rich slices of Nutella pie recall the sweet flavors of Italy's chocolate mountain ranges, and a sextet of zeppoles tops balls of deep-fried dough with spackles of fine powdered sugar.