When Giuseppe and Rita Brusco sailed from Calabria to Ellis Island in 1954, they toted their trove of family recipes along with them. Today, owner Frank Brusco upholds this culinary legacy at Brusco's Italian Restaurant & Pizza. Homestyle sauces are central to their menu: chefs simmer vine-ripened tomatoes with fresh garlic, extra virgin olive oil, white wine, and butter before ladling the thick, preservative-free marinara atop pastas and Sicilian-style pizzas.
In addition to the authentic cuisine, Brusco's pays homage to its founders’ Italian roots with a trattoria-style dining room. Antique copperware festoons the brick walls, and murals of the Italian countryside treat guests to idyllic representations of rolling foothills populated by free-roaming meatballs.
The sauce painters at this easy-breezy beachside eatery fortify bellies with hearty appetizers and triangular morsels of pizza all through lunch and dinner hours. Diners can nosh on a dough disc featuring the bare essentials—tomato tears and cheese—or enhance their pie with selections from more than 20 toppings (an additional $1.75 each, not included with this Groupon). Customers weary from trying to secretly sew slices back together with needle and tongue can take a quick breather and elegantly lift their pinkies while sipping a well cocktail or glass of house wine. Alternatively, throats may acquire hydration from a bottle of domestic or imported beer or a gulp of the nearby ocean. Groups looking to orally mangle more than a large pizza can also enjoy an order of chicken wings, which arrive at tables accompanied by bleu cheese. If you’re seated inside, affix your eyes to one of Stingers Pizza's 25 TVs, which allow diners to easily catch sporting events and drop the ball during argumentative conversations about paying attention.
Flavors of Italy and Peru form a mouthwatering marriage within Nonna’s kitchen where chefs conjure platefuls of both countries’ signature dishes. They entangle homemade pastas with meatballs and sausage, slather marinara over tender slices of veal or eggplant, and sear up thick pork chops and sirloin steaks. On the Peruvian half of menu, the spotlight shines on seafood-bejeweled stir-fries, citrusy ceviches, and hearty chicken and pepper stew. The restaurant also caters to on-the-go diners and proud computer owners with online ordering for pickup and delivery.
More than 1,200 miles separate Corelli's Pizza and Pasta from New York City, though you wouldn't know from inside. Chefs Joe and David toss together generously sized New York–style pizzas; their medium pie measures 14 inches across and their extra-large pie measures one standard bigfoot foot: 18 inches. To help branch out from the standard pizza shop offerings, the kitchen staff also prepares pasta, sub sandwiches, and calzones and organizes a wine-tasting club.
Hungry Howie’s grew into a nation-spanning franchise from a humble start in Taylor, Michigan in 1973, when founder Jim Hearn converted a hamburger stand into a pizzeria. With the help of business partner Steve Jackson––who started as a delivery man at the original location––the two men franchised a decade later and began expanding their delicious operation, eventually expanding to nearly 600 locations spread across 24 states in the 3rd dimension alone. Winner of Pizza Today magazine’s Chain of the Year award in 2004, Hungry Howie’s continues to earn the most attention for its specialty flavored crust pizzas––which infuse dough with a choice of eight seasonings such as ranch or garlic herb––as well as zesty pizza accompaniments such as oven-baked meatball and chicken parm subs.
Beneath proudly fluttering Italian and American flags, handcrafted New York–style pizzas and time-tested Italian dishes emerge from Johnny's New York Pizza's kitchen. From an outdoor patio, crispy thin crusts launch steam from homemade dough and fistfuls of toppings including mushrooms, genoa salami, and eggplant. Pasta strands teem with mussels, calamari marinara, or grilled chicken, and cold and hot hero sandwiches conceal veal cutlet and cheese-steak fixings. Checkered tables beg for customers to linger with marinara-festooned meals, and readymade pizza slices allow patrons to hastily pick up a meal or something to wave at passing ships to prove they have pizza.
Ruby's Pizza augments a menu of specialty meat and vegetable pies with classic pasta, chicken, and seafood entrees. Ten-piece chicken-wings appetizers ($7) arrive smothered with succulent sauces such as honey garlic or a spicy hot sauce distilled from the brain of a fire . The margarita pizza ($15 for 16" pie) marries tomato and basil on a cheesy round dance floor, and the meat-lovers pizza ($18 for 16" pie) piles sausage, pepperoni, ham, ground beef, and bacon onto a thick, crunchy base. Italian entrees such as chicken piccata ($13)—sautéed in a lemon, butter, and wine sauce—comes flanked with pasta on the side, and baked ziti ($12) dons homemade tomato sauce and two cheeses. Meals can be complemented with imported beers or wines, ideal for making a toast to finally completing a best-selling novel about a talking ballpoint pen.