Housemade pastas, hearty Italian entrees, and New York–style pizza sold by the slice populate the lengthy menu at Cafe Roma. In the kitchen, chefs prepare chicken, veal, and fresh seafood in a variety of ways, from shrimp scampi sautéed with garlic and lemon and tossed over linguini to veal parmigiana blanketed in mozzarella and tomato sauce. Kids can practice their cutlery skills with spaghetti and fettuccine alfredo or munch on a slice of “Grandma’s” pizza topped with marinara sauce and garlic. Unlike Cookie Monster’s intervention, meals conclude with rich desserts, such as tiramisu and cheesecake. Though Cafe Roma has a comfortable BYOB dining room, the eatery also offers take-out, delivery, and catering.
At Rosati's, specialty pizzas cavort with traditional pastas across a sprawling smorgasbords of a menu featuring classic Italian dishes. Equipped with a family recipe more than a century old, the pie personnel spin Chicago-style deep-dish disks ($10.99 for a 12"; $17.99 for an 18") with chunky tomato sauce and deliciously gooey cheese slathered upon a buttery, pan-cooked thick crust. Unlike horror films starring frozen vegetables, the Rosati's Monster pizza ($17.55 for a 12"; $29.05 for an 18") terrifies hunger pangs thanks to its hearty ensemble cast of 11 toppings, including ground beef and canadian bacon. Engage grub receptacles with the baked mostaccioli ($7.75), a mozzarella-infused Old World pasta dish, or impress a geologist with the complex layers of homemade baked lasagna ($7.50).
When the titular owner of Mr. Jim's Pizza founded his first eatery in 1975, he wasn't planning to be there for long. Instead, he hoped his business profits would help him to open his own franchise of McDonald's, where he'd worked part-time to put himself through college. Soon, however, the success of his shop led to the opening of several more locations in Garland, as well as franchises across the state. Today, Mr. Jim presides over dozens of Texas pizza joints, where chefs hand-stretch freshly made dough to create their trademark pizzas. Loaded with fresh mozzarella, crisp veggies, and real meat toppings, these pies fill tables and takeout boxes alongside appetizers such as wings and bread sticks dipped in fresh tomato sauce.
While growing up in Reggio di Calabria, Italy, Paolo Siciliano acquired a passion for traditional southern Italian food from his mother, Maria, who cooked for his family every day. After moving to the United States, Siciliano pursued his dreams of serving fresh pastas baked with mozzarella cheeses, opening his first restaurant in 1981.
The restaurant has always been a family business, with all nine of the Siciliano children working at the restaurant at points in its history. Today, Paolo's son Brian serves as a chef, adding his own twist to the family recipes as his crew bakes pans of the restaurant's complimentary buttery garlic rolls alongside their housemade lasagna. After spending 21 years under the same roof, baking manicotti and preparing fresh dough, Paolo and his wife Fran decided to upgrade to a new location, where Roman-style columns flank booths, and vivid paintings depict gondoliers reaching out through the frame to grab diners' plates of tiramisu.
The culinary artisans at Scalini's Pizza & Pasta handcraft classic Italian dishes and New York–style pizza crisped in a stone oven. The extensive dinner menu unveils savory appetizers such as toasted cheese ravioli (an $8 value). For an entree, diners can dizzy cutlery with a heaping platter of spaghetti (an $11 value) decked in meat, mushroom, or marinara sauces and escorted by a meatball, sausage, or grilled chicken. The broiled salmon (a $16 value) recites an abridged Moby Dick on a buttery bed of basil rice. Pies from Scalini's pizza menu heap fresh ingredients onto handmade dough in specialty incarnations, such as Scalini's pesto pizza (a $10+ value), which is slathered with piquant pesto and peppered with chunks of tender grilled chicken. Diners can conclude meals with tiramisu or cappuccino pie as they recline amid an intimate environment with hanging lights and wall sconces shimmering against landscape paintings.
Handmade pizza dough and family-forged recipes suffused with fragrant spices and homemade ingredients await eager Italian appetites at Al's Pizzeria. An opening order of stuffed mushrooms buttresses its borders with a hearty meat and seafood mixture to increase its chances at vegetable strongman competitions ($5.50). Dough developed from scratch cradles a bubbly bed of Wisconsin mozzarella and a selection from more than 20 toppings in thin-crust, pan, and stuffed pizzas, such as the taco pizza with lettuce, tomato, and olives atop sizzling ground beef and american cheese ($15–$21.50). Customers arm themselves with forks and mental fortitude to take on helpings of homemade lasagna ($9.95) or chicken vesuvio, a boneless chicken breast, potato wedges, and green peas sautéed in a white wine and garlic sauce ($11.95–$13.95), recalling ancient Vesuvius erupting garlic-scented magma from within the earth's chardonnay interior so long ago.