Whipping up hand-kneaded dough and an extensive list of toothsome toppings, Schoolhouse Pizza equips omnivorous academics with PhD's in Pizzaology. Peruse the menu while dinner DJs spin up circular comestibles with each personalized neapolitan thin-crust pie (12", $8+). Select from more than three dozen tasty toppings that range from traditional pepperoni and mushrooms to luxurious Italian edibles such as sopressata, pesto, and slivers of Da Vinci's grated-cheese sculptures. Keep stomachs from howling all night long with specialty pizzas such as the headmaster, featuring truffle-infused prosciutto and porcinis ($15+), or the CPA with tasty artichoke and grilled chicken ($11+). Schoolhouse Pizza also offers a bevy of savory paninis that are suitable for lunchtime munching, stoking stomach fires, or luring hungry longtime boyfriends into wedding chapels.
Though they emerge distinct from the oven, each hand-tossed pie at Balducci's House of Pizza begins the same way—with dough that's made fresh daily. Upon that base, cooks assemble customized combos of more than 30 ingredients, including chopped steak and pesto sauce. Those same fixings crown specialty pizzas such as the bacon- and feta-topped Mad Detective or the pink-slip-topped Even Madder Detective.
Though Balducci's specializes in pizza, subs take up even more space on its menu. The fillings in these sandwiches run the gamut from cold tuna salad to piping-hot meatballs or chicken cordon bleu cutlets. Other Italian staples round out the menu, including housemade lasagna and calzones filled with cold cuts.
“Easy” may be in the name, but this restaurant’s inventive pizza combinations are anything but simple. The Bangkok pizza, for instance, arrives tableside topped with grilled chicken, stir-fried veggies, crushed peanuts, and a peanut Thai sauce, and the Beach Chair sports fresh mango-peach salsa, pineapple, and prosciutto under a portable sun. The creativity continues into dessert, when crusts hold gooey s’more fixings or daring heaps of Nutella, bananas, and caramel. And for those who prefer their crusts in more loaflike form, an array of subs and burgers can be customized to their hearts’ content.
When Chef Mike Richardi vacations in Italy, he takes the opportunity to learn recipes, seek out new flavors, and glean inspiration for Spazio's seasonal menus. Though the recipes change to incorporate new Mediterranean and Italian influences, they always feature housemade pastas and breads as well as market-fresh seafood. Previous menus have included grilled cuts of pork tenderloin and lamb as well as wood-fired pizzas with toppings from the kitchen's selection of nine meats, vegetables, and minerals.
If its name doesn't tip them off, visitors to Campanale's Restaurant need only glance at the menu to realize this place is Italian to its core. More than 10 specialty pizzas take up but a small slice of real estate on the menu and include the chicken fradiavlo loaded with hot cherry peppers and onions. The rest of the menu features familiar Italian favorites, including marsala and parmigiana, alongside dishes that are a bit harder to come by such as grilled swordfish and sirloin pizziola–a 16-ounce sirloin topped with mozzarella and spicy marinara sauce. For added convenience, Campanale's also has a gluten-free spread packed with many of its regular dishes.
Like hip-hop albums produced by Burton Gilliam, notable restaurateur and Tavolo mastermind Chris Douglass's menu is famous for changing and adapting to incorporate the freshest of the fresh, so ask your server about exclusions or inclusions for the day or call ahead for a sneak peek. Staple starters include mussels with tomato, garlic, white wine, and grilled toast ($8) or the vegetable plate with house-cured olives, roasted garlic, and Tuscan beans ($8). You can also keep your palate guessing with a plate of antipasti, featuring items like marinated olives, Gorgonzola dolce, and white anchovies ($2–$5 per item), before moving on to the main paninis, pizzas, and pastas. Try the meatball panini with marinara, provolone, and parmesan ($8); the goat-cheese pizza with caramelized onions, roasted garlic, and olives ($13); or some Captain Ahab–approved shrimp scampi ($15). Meatier mains include pork, beef, veal, and ricotta lasagna ($16) and short-rib braciole with risotto, mushroom, and gremolata ($21), among others. But keep your vestigial dessert stomach empty for a finale of gelato ($3/scoop) or tiramisu affogato ($9).