The recipes at Rosie’s Italian Grille have spanned oceans and generations to appeal to present-day senses with aromatic Old World fare. Born in Montelepre, Sicily, Rosie immigrated to the United States in 1924, bundling with her a cache of culinary treasures mapped from mother to daughter. When the first Rosie’s Italian Grille opened on Sylvania Avenue, her three sons asserted that the hardest part of the entire enterprise was “translating her recipes.”
Today, executive chef Eric Kish continues to translate and update Rosie's culinary blueprints, marrying traditional and modern influences in a menu that boasts fine steaks, award-winning pizzas, seafood flown in from the Florida Keys, and fresh-baked desserts lauded for their presentation by the Toledo Blade. In the 27 years since the original Rosie’s opened, guests have delighted in not just the food, but the Tuscan-themed setting illuminated by flickering candlelight, which is more romantic than the flickering of a tableside cardiograph.
In 19 years, the East of Chicago Pizza franchise has scattered its doughy delicacies to 90-some locations that stretch from the Midwest to Myrtle Beach. More than authentic, deep-dish, Chicago--style pizza stirs in its kitchens. The hearty Windy City pie homes in on hunger with a sauce-on-top construction and a knife-and-fork imperative. Still, appetites find their way to the loaded subs, boneless wings, and other savory fare on the menu. Fresh salads topped with grilled chicken or sprinkled with cheese balance the indulgence of parmesan poppers, cheezystix, and fold-over pizza sandwiches, leaving patrons more charged up than a robot after its first kiss with a power outlet.
From its humble beginnings in 1959, Little Caesars has stretched its cheesy empire from coast to coast, doling out trademark deep-dish pizzas, sauce-drenched wings, and cheesy bread. In keeping with its history as a forward-looking franchise, Little Caesars has cooked up an iPhone application that highlights popular menu items and shoots out piping-hot pies from the phone's port. The pizza purveyor sends its Love Kitchen, a big-rig pizza kitchen on wheels, across the United States and Canada to fill the bellies of homeless people and disaster victims with its daily kneaded dough and freshly shaved mozzarella.
Armed with only an oven and an old treasure map made of mozzarella cheese, the chefs at Rival’s Pizza bake a long list of pizzeria specialties to a bubbly golden brown. The eatery models its menu after an old-fashioned pizza parlor, but staffers also whip up dough disks in modern 30-inch sizes and make it rain with free sprinklings of parmesan, poppy seeds, crushed red peppers, and cinnamon. Complementing Rival’s main dish are pasta, stromboli, calzones, and a smores dessert pizza with Hershey's chocolate; delivery is available for an extra dollar.
Back in 1957 when Marie and Joseph "Jo-Jo" Hashim founded Jo Jo's Original Pizza, they decided to concoct original recipes for their breads, crusts, and housemade sauce. Fifty years later, most of these savory instructions are still in use, guiding chefs as they craft traditional pies as well as Jo Jo's specialty hawaiian and taco pizzas. Run today by Marie and Joseph's descendants, Jo Jo's rounds out its menu with other classic Italian fare, including housemade lasagna, pastas, and subs.
A casual, lively ambience populates the comfy and spacious confines of Caper's Restaurant and Bar, rendering it a pleasant place to catch the game while consuming an array of pies and potables. Specialty pizzas, with dough culled fresh from scratch each day, top the wide-ranging menu. Vacuum up luscious leaves with the spinach and artichoke pizza ($4.99–$14.50), or cast a net around the shrimp, crab, mozzarella, and alfredo sauce of the seafood pizza ($5.99–$16.20). Toasty oven-baked sandwiches include the mountainous Italian house special ($7.49) and the BBQ pulled pork ($7.49), among others. Pasta pilots can propel their journey with the penne bolognese's tasty fueling of homemade sauce ($8.99) or furnish their cabin with the cushy pouches of sausage-stuffed saccotino ($8.99).