At Westside Pizza of Lompoc, chefs adhere to a strict ethos of freshness, making dough each day by hand to create delectable pizza masterpieces for pickup or delivery. They crown each pie with real mozzarella cheese, canadian bacon, pepperoni, sundried tomatoes, and plenty of other toppings—none of which are ever frozen. They've got pasta on the menu, too, designed especially for those who are allergic to circular shapes.
Enormous portions of pasta weigh down tables inside Petrini's Italian Restaurants, which specialize filling stomachs with old-school Italian fare. Inside the kitchen, chefs cover thin crusts with slices of salami, mushrooms, and barbecue chicken to make custom pies. Swirls of steam float above plates of gnocchi, tortellini, and ravioli, and generous helpings of chicken and veal parmesan slip between slices of sandwich bread or go solo as dinner entrees. Petrini’s homemade salad dressings top crisp salads, and can be purchased by the bottle, gallon, or super-soaker tank.
Pizza Mizza's dough-spinning chefs slather signature sauces on three styles of homemade crust to craft gourmet pies, which serve as headliners for a mouthwatering menu of classic Italian fare. Self-made pizzas ($6.29 plus $0.99 per topping for personal size) flex their artistic muscles by bedecking thin, regular, or thick dough canvases in any combination of 29 meats, cheeses, and veggies. Submit to a chef's intuition to savor gourmet concoctions such as the bacon, basil, and tomato pizza ($8.99 for personal size) or the chicken and caramelized-walnut pizza ($8.99). A spicy chicken and avocado sandwich ($8.99) rests upon toasted sourdough bread and partners with a tortilla soup topped with avocado and pico de gallo ($3.99), creating a perfect lunchtime pairing. Unlike an edible gondola, the hearty chicken Alfredo ($9.99) floats atop linguine, broccoli, and fresh Parmesan to satiate stomachs with a taste of old-world Italy. Pizza Mizza’s assorted kids' menu pleases youngsters with pared down portions, and a dog-friendly outdoor patio pleases parents of furry children.
A link to Santa Barbara's past, Aldo's Italian Ristorante resides on the grounds of the Janssens-Orella adobe house, which was built in 1857 and holds a spot on the National Register of Historic Places. Since 1986, Aldo's has done its part to write its own chapter into the historic site's story, serving homemade Italian specialties for lunch and dinner every day of the week. During visits, diners may enjoy freshly prepared dishes inside amid ornate pillars and elegant artwork, or outside in the heated courtyard.
It's a tradition at Arnoldi's Cafe to make things by hand, whether you're crafting meatballs or the building itself. Though the original venue was founded in 1937 by Giuseppe Arnoldi and his wife Ilda, the current location was erected in 1940. Giuseppe, known as Joe, quarried the stone himself. He made sure to include all the trappings of a rustic Italian getaway: a maple floor for dancing, a pair of bocce courts, and a mural of Lago di Como, where he was born. And, though he and Ilda ceased to run the restaurant in 1969, he appointed a bar manager who remains there to this day. His name is Bucky, and he's a tule elk who welcomes visitors from his spot on the wall.
Thankfully, guests can taste Joe's legacy as well as see it. The menu at Arnoldi's boasts homestyle Italian fare, from bruschetta drizzled in imported olive oil to veal sautéed in wine and a lemon caper sauce. Like the vases at an unscrupulous antique store, many of the pasta dishes here are made fresh from scratch. There's handmade gnocchi, homemade lasagna, and handmade ravioli. Diners enjoy their meals with wine in a romantic dining room or on a heated patio, while in the garden, teams compete in seasonal bocce tournaments.
At Dogtown, diners nosh on one of seven signature hot dogs beneath towering palm trees and azure sky. Chili, cheese, and diced onions decorate the signature Gaucho dog, and the California Dreamin' frank cuddles with mango habanero, guacamole, and bacon. The classic combo of sauerkraut, onions, and mustard adorns the Coney Island hot dog, and a Louisiana hot link sausage forms the basis of the energizing Hangover Helper. Like PhD certificates, dogs come with a side of chips and a soft drink, the better to top off bellies to fullness. Guests can devour their dogs on the outdoor patio or settle onto a stool within the confines of the eatery's mustard-yellow walls.
When creating a pie, cooks at Paesano's Pizzeria adhere to the tradition of NYC's pizza chefs from start to finish. They begin with fresh ingredients, kneading pizza dough from scratch. Next, they hand-toss the pies into circles ready for toppings. After slathering on freshly made sauce and toppings such as italian sausage or fresh mushrooms, they stone-bake the pizzas. You can buy it by the slice or by the pie, or opt for another Italian staple such as a hot sub or lasagna.