Don?t try to get Jerry to spill the beans on how he makes his pizzas. A secret list of ingredients makes up the sauce, and a secret old-country tradition goes into making the dough. And a traditional stone-hearth oven may or may not cook the pies to a crisp finish. But Jerry will let you know which toppings he uses, so you can customize your crust with a secret white sauce, jalape?os, Louisiana hot sausage, red onions, and artichoke hearts. Jerry will also toss all the pizza toppings into a doughy calzone pocket if customers so choose. And on the weekends, while Jerry is busy in the kitchen, live musicians and butter sculptors entertain guests.
Hole in The Wall Pizza is doing something right. That something earned the eatery the 2013 Readers' Choice Award for Best Pizza from the Porterville Recorder. Piping-hot pizzas piled with toppings emerge from steaming ovens, including The Hole pizza, a 28-inch behemoth that serves up to 14 people?or 7 ravenous werewolves. Besides pizza, diners can opt for hot sandwiches and calzones or pair their pies with draft beers.
Howie, the founder of Howie & Son's Pizza Parlor, can still be found behind his bar most days, pouring up pints of the 24 carefully chosen craft beers he has on tap. He's been back there since 2003, when he opened the restaurant with his family. He likes do everything the traditional way: he pours beers himself. He bakes his delicious pizzas in an old-fashioned brick oven. He even chose the building specifically because it has housed pizza parlors since 1963 and has lots of vintage accoutrement.
In spite of the old-fashioned bent, the eatery boasts a modern sound system. The speakers have spit out live music from dozens of national and local bands, including such acts as Matt & Kim, Vampire Weekend, and Modest Mouse.
Located on a 7-acre plot of land, Visalia Adventure Park carves out ample space for all ages to have fun. Outdoors, the park features a bumper boat pool with a waterfall, an 18-hole miniature golf course, and go-kart tracks for both the family and speedsters. If it's raining or that fire in the clouds becomes too hot, visitors can migrate indoors for arcade playing, laser tagging, and mini bowling.
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.
The dough wizards at Papa John's hand toss circular masterpieces with original and thin crusts made from high-protein flour to support warm bouquets of toppings. Hand-cut produce crowns all of Papa John's pizzas, mingling with the sun-soaked sweetness of sauce made from fresh, California-grown tomatoes. By adhering to its brand promise of "better ingredients, better pizza," Papa John's grew from a back-tavern pizzeria into more than 3,500 restaurants within three decades' time, or the amount of time it takes to grow a single pizzeria from a small seed.