Hand-crafted sauces and imported cheese form the base of many of the Italian specialties at Gloria's Little Italy. Plump potato gnocchi—a customer favorite—and oven-baked salmon grace tables at dinner, and lunchtime ushers in waves of paninis and pizzas dressed in fresh veggies and meatballs. Pick out a cannoli from the glass display case or stop in on a weekend night to have a live accordionist soundtrack your dinner.
Spark's lunch menu offers an inspired selection of modern culinary treats to enjoy among the eatery's modern décor and soaring ceilings. Commence the meal by revisiting the meaty candy shops of yore with fried pork lollipops—juicy pork cuts coated with jalapeño tartar and orange sweet chili and served with lemon soy vinegar dipping sauces ($8). For a main bite, grab a gourmet grilled white-cheddar-cheese sandwich served on sourdough bread, lightly smothered in onion-sherry marmalade, and begging to be dipped into its side of tomato-parmesan soup. For dessert, climb up to the rafters and swan dive into a mound of refreshing sorbet ($5).
Chef and owner Amrik Singh prepares traditional and authentic Indian cuisine for his guests at India Palace. Singh’s dishes, from basmati rice to fish coconut korma, add spice to a menu lined with a variety of vegetarian, vegan, and gluten-free meal options, plus sweet desserts such as mango ice cream and cardamom-flavored rice pudding.
The cooks at Sammy’s reinvent American diner classics by piling 1/3-pound beef patties with unusual ingredients and blending numerous varieties of pie into gourmet milk shakes. Burger behemoths include Ben's Big Belly Burger, with a meaty base that hides beneath swiss cheese, grilled onions, grilled pineapple, guacamole, teriyaki sauce, and mayonnaise. Other treats include the Hey Nikki You're So Fine grilled-chicken sandwich and the Something About Mary, a black-bean patty caught in a farcical love hexagon of sautéed onions, pepper jack, pico de gallo, avocado, lettuce, and tomato.
In addition to concocting signature pie shakes in flavors such as mint Oreo and four different types of cheesecake, the team at Sammy's blends smoothies, regular shakes and malts, and cupcake shakes in flavors such as spiced carrot cake with cream-cheese frosting. Alongside the reformed diner fare, Sammy's regularly serves up live music events and a hip, relaxed atmosphere.
After selling his Brazilian import store, Brazilian-born J.R. Lopez opened Braza Grill, a rodizio-style steak house reminiscent of the barbecue restaurants in his home country. Servers tote skewers loaded with pork sausage, garlic-infused tenderloin, and other meats from table to table, offering unlimited portions and variety to hungry diners. An open fire pit cooks the bacon-wrapped chicken and pork loins along with pineapples for a sweet sidekick. Patrons can stretch their legs and nonchalantly loosen their belts during trips to the hot and cold buffet stocked with pastas, salads, and a brazilian black-bean stew called feijoada, according to CityWeekly.