Fresh ingredients play a starring role in the kitchen at Sammy’s Pizza and Pub, where chefs craft each neo-Neapolitan pizza crust by hand. From there, diners take meal matters into their own figurative hands, customizing each golden-brown circle with a choice of premium red, alfredo, olive-oil, or pesto sauce, and toppings such as meatballs, spinach, capers, and shrimp. Cheese options include a cheddar-mozzarella blend and a vegan-friendly version milked from fresh ears of corn. Those forgoing sliced sustenance altogether can opt for one of the menu's savory sandwiches, such as a house-made meatball grinder, featuring meatballs made from a blend of ground beef and pork and seared in red wine.
The choices don't end there, however, as the eatery's dining room has been cleverly split into two sections. Couples and sophisticated singles can admire the carefully erected towers of glasses filled with Boulevard beer and top-shelf liquor on the restaurant and bar side, and families find suitable midmeal entertainment in a game room that keeps bored tykes from playing with their dinner or sculpting it into a new imaginary friend.
At Mio, Executive Chef Julian J. Viso has designed a menu that highlights Italy's most beloved national dishes. He and his crew smother 10-ounce steaks in gorgonzola sauce, stuff ravioli with tender veal, and toss linguine with shrimp, scallops, and mussels. Imported red and white wines complement all of the above dishes, as do Italian-inspired cocktails like the classic negroni and the Hemingway, named after Ernest's long-lost Sicilian twin, Ernesto.
Originating as a post-performance reward for owner Annette's theater pals, Amore’s confectious rounds break the cupcake mold for creativity and deliciousness. Relieve summer-camp jitters with the large Smore Amore chocolate pizza ($29.95), studded with graham crackers and marshmallows. Or order the original break-a-leg recipe ($29.95 for large) with the works (marshmallows, peanuts, coconut crispies, white chocolate, and maraschino cherries) to get psyched before an epic one-woman performance of Shakespeare's spec script for Major Dad. Chocolate pizzas are also available in small ($11.95) and medium ($19.95) sizes, and in peanut-butter dreams and toffeelicious flavors.
Trezo Vino Wine Bistro deals in delicious and sharable plates coupled with an extensive wine collection. Discover new cooking and utensil-wielding techniques as you watch your soon-to-be-eatens be prepared in the restaurant's exhibition kitchen. Dinner items include favorites such as the Day Boat Scallops, served with crisp potato galette, grilled asparagus and pancetta aioli ($24), and the pasta al fungi, a freshly made spinach pasta with caramelized oyster and two varieties of mushroom ($17). For open-air appetites, Trezo Vino offers an outdoor patio with a special small plate menu, served nightly from 4 p.m.–10 p.m. Savor the chicken artichoke dip ($8) or the lobster mac, a cheesy monument to human innovation and crustacean defeat ($10).
Ingredient restaurant offers a smorgasbord of gourmet and customizable culinary bites in a quick-serve atmosphere, catering to dietary restrictions whenever possible. Local ingredients claim squatter's rights on the menu, sprucing up dishes such as the custom salads ($8.95), with more than 75 options to arrange into fully functioning veggie ecosystems.
Founded in November 2011 by Joe Birch of Avenues Bistro, Lakeside Tavern plates a hearty menu of upscale pub fare. The 10 flat-screen TVs lining the tavern's interior trumpet sports broadcasts and doo-wop hits sung by Knute Rockne over the hubbub of carousing crowds spilling from the dining room onto a broad patio with views of a small, sparkling lake. In the kitchen, chefs stuff burger buns with diverse fillings, from 8-ounce patties of freshly ground filet mignon to vegetarian-friendly grilled portobello mushrooms.