Owner and chef Arthur Pereira refuses to choose between Italian and Portuguese cuisine, so he fills his menu with iconic dishes from both countries instead. He and his chefs make pesto in-house, hand-roll every batch of gnocchi, and stuff each ravioli with ricotta cheese or lobster. They also replicate Portugal's signature seafood stew, mariscada, by filling a pot with a bountiful catch of clams, mussels, shrimp, calamari, and scallops, then poaching the tender morsels in a Portuguese-style sauce with peppers, onions, and diced tomatoes.
Vine-laced trellises cover the dining room's ceiling, creating the ambiance of a rustic patio overlooking the Mediterranean's world-famous icebergs. Orange tablecloths and Tuscan-yellow walls fit into this intimate theme with their romantic, sunset-like colors.
Though Bacci’s is in Saugus, a car ride or several Orange Line stops away from the North End, its menu of Sicilian-style pizzas and pasta dishes adheres to the historic Boston neighborhood’s renowned culinary tradition. The family-owned shop bursts with the aroma of baking dough and simmering Italian sauces. The chefs toss specialty pizzas by hand and layer subs, wraps, and paninis with an array of mozzarella, meats, and vegetables. Bacci’s also hosts “Make Your Own Pizza” parties, during which diners can try their hand at designing their own pies without the hassle of milking the dough from the cows themselves.
Pastalina's Restaurant serves hearty baked pastas and chicken and veal dishes inspired by the Avellino region of southern Italy. Chef and owner Rocco Ciccone whips up a menu full of flavorful dishes such as a zesty puttanesca peppered with capers and olives, and rich pasta alla matriciana, filled with bacon, onions, and plum tomatoes. The restaurant’s catering packages, which can be tailored to huge wedding parties as well as intimate get-togethers, feature homemade fusilli, caprese salad, fruit platters, chicken cacciatore, and other offerings.
An edible emporium of eatability, Nonni's Pizza serves a tongue-tantalizing menu of piping-hot pies smothered in vine-ripened tomato sauce and fresh Italian cheeses. Chomp into the BBQ bacon cheeseburger pie ($13.99/large), crowned with barbeque-sauce-marinated meatballs and crispy strips of bacon, or ward off clingy vampires with Nonni's Favorite ($13.99/large), which comes smothered in white sauce, breaded chicken, broccoli, garlic, and olive oil. End any eating expedition with the sweet delight of cinnamaple sticks ($3.99), breadsticks doused in cinnamon, sugar, and maple syrup. The technologically advanced pizzeria features online ordering courtesy of a pedal-operated computer powered by horses.
Featured by Billy Costa on the show TV Diner, on which Costa calls the restaurant a landmark and a legend, Prince Pizzeria has been slinging sauce over pies for half a century. Beneath the unmistakable soaring model of the Leaning Tower of Pisa, owners Steven and Trisha Castraberti oversee a menu piled with homemade marinara and pies lauded as the Best Pizza of the North Shore. Diners bite into specialty pies such as the greek, whose spinach and feta cheese combine with black olives and tomatoes ($15.95), or the primavera, on which eggplant and roasted red peppers lounge. Arturo’s classic marinara ladles daily-made tomato sauce over spaghetti or ziti ($8.99), and patrons lounging amid yellow and red walls slice into a tender, breaded veal cutlet hiding beneath red sauce and mozzarella ($13.99).
Whether with its plates of black mussels swimming in a red sauce or the art-deco-style bar lined with vibrant liquor bottles, La Vita Mia floods the senses with color. Diners sit at white-clothed tables bathed in a golden light from wall sconces that compete for space with old black-and-white pictures. Glasses of burgundy-colored wine sparkle next to bone-white plates hoisting steaks, pastas, and seafood sprinkled with vibrant flecks of parsley and cutting boards topped with crusty brown loaves.