No, he wasn't born in Sicily. In fact—according to a 2011 article in the Boston Globe—Doug Ferriman started out in the pizza business without even knowing how to make dough. But he learned fast, besting 120 competitors and two Italian chefs to take second place at the International Pizza Challenge later that year. Ferriman is also one of only two people to have won the International Pizza Expo's Pizza of the Year honor more than once, in 2004 and 2007, according to trade magazine Pizza Today. Finally, in the 2013 competition, Ferriman won first in the non-traditional category in the northeast region.
Today, Ferriman brings his dough tossing know-how to Crazy Dough's Pizza, which he co-owns with his wife, Melissa. Their labor-of-love-turned-small-business-success-story, which has been documented in media outlets such as the Boston Business Journal, can be explained by their commitment to quality ingredients and diverse recipes. Their chefs start with a solid pizza foundation of North Dakota flour, vine-ripened California plum tomatoes, and Wisconsin cheese. Next, they transform raw dough into three pizza types: pan-baked, rectangular sicilian pies; hearty brick-oven rounds; or their specialty fire-grilled pizzas, cooked to a crispy, smoky finish on an open-flame hickory grill.
Finally, guests can choose from a huge selection of off-the-wall toppings and signature combinations, such as cheeseburger bacon or potato bacon cheddar. The shops also attract guests with $5 Pabst Blue Ribbon pitchers, calzones, and Crazy Dough Bowls—salads whose bread-bowl exterior can be eaten or worn as a savory hat.
The culinary construction crew at PD's Pizza builds a menu of 27 types of specialty pizzas from homemade dough, tangy sauce, and nearly 20 toppings. Taste buds revel in Greek-inspired pies, which range from an eggplant-and-meatball moussaka to a Mediterranean loaded with feta cheese, olives, and sautéed spinach. Flying saucers of ham and pineapple transport tongues to Hawaii, and the Pesto Inferno's spicy mix of jalapeños, banana peppers, and red-pepper flakes makes tongues hot enough to fry eggs. New York–style garlic knots twist garlic bread's flavor into a sailor-friendly shape, and house salads arrive to tables topped in five types of veggies and a choice of seven dressings, including blue cheese, light italian, and house-made honey mustard.
A family-owned sustenance staple for more than 60 years, Leo's Ristorante's homey redbrick exterior greets families to generous portions of homemade Italian and American comfort-food dishes culled from fresh ingredients. Leading off a stacked menu is the hearty New England clam chowder ($4.59 cup, $5.59 bowl), which sets the table for wholesome, heavy-hitting handhelds such as the chicken parmesan sandwich ($7.99 small, $8.99 large) and the Big Red meatball sub ($6.99 small, $7.99 large). The tortellini a la Carolina ($16) surrounds its tricolored, circular cheese pasta with grilled chicken and a light butter sauce, while the spaghetti a la Gina's ($12.99) savory red-sauced noodles send forks into a pasta pirouette. Enjoy a large, one-topping pizza ($12.99), adorned in culinary confetti such as pepperoni or olives, or wrap taste buds around the Milano panini ($8.99), containing grilled eggplant, smoked mozzarella, fresh tomatoes, and garlic olive oil.
Cavalieri's Wood Street Pizza is a family-owned-and-operated cookery that has been serving up house favorites and custom creations for 18 years. While the basic variety of pizza exists ($6.75 for 10" to $16.25 for a full sheet), Wood Street's pizza menu shines with exotic topped discs, such as buffalo chicken pizza, taco pizza fiesta, and a lasagna pizza pie. Specialty pizzas are $9, $18, or $27 (or $18.25 for thin crust), depending on size. If you prefer your pizza folded into a crescenty pocket of flavor, opt for one of the 20 varieties of calzones ($2.75 for single up to $27 for a 25" giant). Wood Street also whips up appetizers, grinders ($5.75–$6.75), a soup of the day ($4.25), salads ($2.50 for a side salad, others $4.50–$7.25), and pasta creations ($6–$9.95). Check the menu for changing specials for lunch, dinner, sandwiches, soups, and pizza, such as June's chicken Caesar.
When Caprice opened in East Greenwich, The Rhode Show correspondent Joe Zito interviewed owner Kostas Karampetsos and overflowed with enthusiasm for his classic Italian preparations. Drawing from his experience running Tavern by the Sea, Kostas and head chef Domingo Fernandez created a menu of pizzas, pastas, and chicken and veal entrees. They also draw inspiration from East Greenwich’s nearby sea monsters to craft seafood dishes such as the scrod francese and frutti di mare, which peppers linguine with littlenecks, scallops, and mussels. Caprice surrounds its guests with elegant dark wood tables and floors and a fully stocked bar. A long wall of windows admits sunlight during the day, and hanging lamps ribbed with an abstract floral design take over at night. Patrons can pull up leather chairs upholstered with a panel of pastel stripes, or slide into one of the lush semicircular booths lining the walls. Behind a speckled stone bar, bartenders also carefully mix more than a dozen specialty martinis.
The menu offers seafood, veal, pasta, and chicken prepared from time-tested family recipes. Rev an appetite engine with coconut shrimp ($11) or homemade fennel-sausage antipasti ($9) and a glass of wine, such as Beringer Pinot Grigio ($6.50) or Trivento Pinot Noir ($7). Traditional Italian entrees include lobster, shrimp, and scallop cannelloni gratineé ($16); chicken campagnolo (egg-battered medallions with prosciutto, mozzarella, sherry, and mushroom demi-glace, $19); and veal bella Napoli (sautéed veal, shrimp, asparagus, portobello, tomatoes, and buffalo mozzarella, $23). Point Judith clams with shrimp and your choice of white, red, or fiery fra diavolo sauce over linguine ($22) and shrimp and scallop della casa ($22) will make any fisherman fondly remember his finest seafood- or mermaid-catching sprees. The trattoria experience would be incomplete without dessert, so sweeten endings with crème-brûlée cheesecake, tiramisu, or spumoni (all desserts are $7).