Mazzio's Italian Eatery's staff rolls out a buffet for lunch and dinner populated with tasty Italian cuisine that they also serve à la carte. The restaurant's staff has been perfecting its culinary modus operandi for more than 50 years, long enough to evolve the pizza selection to include three levels of thickness. Chefs bake standard, deep-dish, and thin crusts—available in gluten-free form—and load each with toppings such as caramelized onions and giant pepperoni. The kitchen makes pasta plates to order, some baked in the oven, such as lasagna, and some tossed in sauce, such as the mainstay spaghetti and meatballs. The signature calzone radiates the ambrosial scent of pizza dough stuffed with meat and cheese, and it's meant to be shared, unlike a pogo stick.
Using family recipes that emigrated from Marigliano, Italy, to the United States in 1901, Pa Pa Pia’s fills bellies with flavorful heaps of Italian favorites. Give the brown paper bag a day off and make a midday meal of the meatball sandwich, served on italian bread and topped with provolone cheese ($8–$9), or gently shove a sharp utensil into a small portion of formaggio manicotti, stuffed fat with asiago, parmesan, mozzarella, and provolone cheeses ($6.50–$7). Because teleporters have yet to be approved for civilian use, Pa Pa Pia's uses its pizza, which is grilled over an open flame in traditional Italian style, to transport taste buds across the Atlantic ($8.50–$29). After a dinner of spagettini bolognese ($9–$10) or a sovereign meal of chicken saltimbocca ($14.95–$15), patrons should demand the dessert tray, lay claim to the chocolate-covered ricotta cheesecake ($6), and scan the wine list for illegal words. Though as much produce is sourced locally or grown in the restaurant’s own garden as possible, Pa Pa Pia’s imports its atmosphere straight from Italy, complete with rich yellow walls, rustic booths, and a patio for devouring innocent pastas outside.
At Gattitown, a vast buffet quells the hungers caused by romping through up to 10,000 square feet of violence-free arcade games, bumper cars, and mini bowling. Before meals, kids scurry between more than 150 exciting games, including virtual-reality racing and tax-filing simulations. In the bumper-car arena, wee ones determine driving dominance by crashing and cruising around a spacious floor. Players then hone their underhand tosses with mini bowling and skee-ball, shooting for tickets to spend on doodads, gadgets, and teddy-bear ransoms inside the Gatti goods store.
When you bite into the juicy tomatoes and finely tuned sauces that grace the pizza pies and strombolis at Johnny Brusco's New York Style Pizza, you're experiencing a genealogy of flavor that extends back to the recipes of Johnny Pace in his 1965 Manlius, New York, pizza shop. Today the restaurant prides itself on using the finest ingredients and a diligent sauce-stirring wrist to deliver a lot of love (and just a sprinkle of hatred to give it zing) into every savory bite.
With its full bar and hearty menu of Irish fare and other pub-centric edibles, The Irish Frog keeps tongue buds happily jigging along in an upbeat environment teeming with the sounds of weekly live music. Wet whistles with an import or craft beer such as a Smithwick's ($4) or a draught Guinness ($5) before sampling heaping plates of "flaming yawn" ($22), a filet mignon rubbed with Cajun spices and wrapped in applewood-smoked bacon. The classic reuben, accessorized by a side of steakhouse fries ($9), sates grumbling hunger tubs any time of day, and the sour-cream-capped potato pancakes of the Irish Boxty's ($6) will keep bellies warm during impromptu glacial ages.
CiCi’s Pizza combines the variety of a buffet with the thrill of bottomless pizza. Each pie is crafted with dough made from scratch daily and then slathered with homemade marinara and showered with toppings ranging from traditional pepperoni and Italian-style sausage to creative combinations including buffalo chicken and mac 'n' cheese. The buffet is stocked with a plethora of fresh pastas, as well as signature salads with the option to put tossing talents to the test at the salad bar. After they've feasted on savory options, diners can revisit the buffet for dessert including freshly baked brownies, slices of apple pizza, and cinnamon rolls drizzled with icing—or they can eat dessert first, thereby tearing an irreparable hole in the space-time continuum.