Ovens at Gianni's Pizza & Wings melt the cheese and bake the crusts of specialty or custom-designed pizzas as cooks coat wings in 34 flavors of sauce and spice. They adorn bacon-cheeseburger pizzas with three types of cheese, bacon, and ground beef and philly steak pies with steak, green peppers, and onions to fill in the large cracks ringing them like the Liberty Bell. Crusty strombolis and calzones surround steak, mushrooms, and A-1 sauce or vegetables and cheese, and toasted hoagies sport gyro meat and meatballs with red sauce.
Slinging dough for well-nigh 50 years in Imperial, Pennsylvania, Don's is kicking up new restaurant turf in Robinson Township with its thin and Sicilian-style pies on dough made daily from scratch. Specialty pizzas ladled with ranch, buffalo, garlic, or marinara sauce slide out of the oven strewn with selections from more than 15 available fresh-cut meat and veggie options. Because Don's partners with Clever Cone ice cream, diners can get hoagies and calzones delivered alongside vanilla ice cream or the head of the snowman that broke your heart.
Inside Mike’s Place, a relaxed setting dotted with sports paraphernalia and a pool table, classic Italian-American recipes meet standard bar eats. As guests alternate bites of homemade lasagna and jumbo wings doused in 1 of 10 sauces, bartenders keep glasses brimming and campaign-finance-reform discussions to a minimum. On Friday nights, live musicians and DJs take center stage.
Bado's Cucina understands that food is not merely sustenance, but an important part of community and family tradition. That's why his rustic restaurant is warmed by a traditional wood-fired stone hearth, and his pizzas and flatbreads are made with the same recipe for dough that he kneaded as a child in his Italian grandmother's kitchen. Visitors to Bado's Cucina gather amid wrought-iron accents and goldenrod-hued walls, watching chefs in the open kitchen bake toasty flatbreads, whip up homemade bread puddings, or stuff eggplants with a series of increasingly smaller eggplants. These sights and smells send patrons on a culinary tour of the Italian peninsula, featuring a carefully selected lineup of pastas, roasted seasonal veggies, and tender cutlets of pork, wood-fired salmon, and lamb chops.
Ten on tap. Sixty varieties in bottles. The beer selection at Cenci's Italian Restaurant & Bar has something for everyone, from Great Divide Hibernation ale on draft to Erie Presque Isle bottled pilsner and a surfeit of other craft options. Cenci’s has more to offer, though, maintaining decor and a food menu worthy of the frequent events it hosts. As hanging lamps gently illuminate tables and booths dressed in warm, brick-based colors, guests indulge in Italian-American fare. In addition to making specialty pies such as steak-onion-ranch pizzas and chicken-broccoli pizzas, the folks at Cenci's are skilled holiday celebrants: heart-shaped pepperoni spangles their Valentine's Day pizza, Halloween parties welcome beer-swilling jack-o'-lanterns with discerning taste, and viewers of important NFL games may be lucky enough to receive free slices at halftime. Like the time Napoleon played Ulysses Grant in an awkward game of chess, weekly trivia encourages brains to battle. Neon writing decorates a chalkboard menu boasting that evening's discounted beers, bombs, and food—there may even be $1 sicilian slices available. The menu also includes calzones, burgers, and pasta.
At Bella Frutteto Restaurant, executive chef Jessica Headrick and sous chef Daniel McQuiston make all sorts of ravioli—lobster, mushroom, butternut squash—but none catch the eye quite like the signature apple ravioli. To make it, they cover jumbo cheese ravioli with a sautéed scramble of golden raisins, figs, and the same granny smith apples used to make the apple-bruschetta appetizer. Their inventive Italian eats share menu space with hearty dishes such as marinated skirt steak, crab cakes, and striped bass that is stuffed with crab, scallop, shrimp, and mermaid-scout cookies.
All of the food is arranged on differently colored plates and served in one of three spaces: a dining room peppered with yellow tablecloths, a bar with seasonal draft beers and flat-screen televisions, or a patio overlooking the orchard that gives Bella Frutteto—roughly translated to “beautiful orchard”—its name.