At Christina's Italian Restaurant and Bar the herbaceous aromas of fresh-baked calzones and lasagna waft around tables checkered in red and white and into nostrils around an outdoor patio. Drawing on family recipes refined by three generations of Sicilians before her, owner Christina Curley oversees a menu of authentic dishes such as seafood frutti di mare. In the kitchen, cooks assemble dishes from fresh-made dough and sauces made onsite by resident Sicilian grandmothers. On plates, chicken and broccoli join mozzarella inside a golden-brown calzone pocket infused with a garlic white-wine sauce, while steak tip au poire swims in garlic, tomatoes, and white wine.
For more than 30 years, the pizza makers at Ray's Pizza have been hand-tossing and baking pies that hearken back to old-world Italy by way of New York. Their food can satisfy appetites for both thin- and thick-crust pizza with Neapolitan- and Sicilian-style slices, and curb Italian-food cravings with hot hoagies and pasta dinners. The Scottsdale location's interior is as warm and welcoming as the pies, with TVs, brick-covered columns, and archways that invoke a rustic, European vibe—like a palace painted light brown with cappuccino. The Glendale restaurant, on the other hand, boasts a full-length mural depicting the New York City skyline.
After four decades dazzling diners in Chicago with hearty Italian fare, Salerno's opened the doors to its first Arizona location, allowing the smells of saucy pastas and cheesy pizzas to waft out. The menu showcases classic Italian fare, such as veal scallopini ($20.75), lasagna ($13.50), and zucchini parmigiana on a bed of beckoning pasta ($14.75). Salerno's also serves a selection of sandwiches ($6.95–$8.95), topping-packed pizzas ($7.85 and up), and a kids' menu for the pint-sized and adults wearing Haley Joel Osment masks.