The award-winning cuisine at D'Canters' features contemporary American dishes with a focus on steaks and seafood. Sunday champagne brunches, host lemon-blueberry pancakes, and dinnertime starters include jalapeño hush puppies. Entrees run the gamut from wild game specials, natural angus prime steaks and include dishes such as shiitake crusted chicken and prime rib or the signature jalapeño lime salmon. On weekends can guests can revel in fresh oyster and duck menu selections. A full service bar and more than 40 wines by the glass can complement each feast, which unfold amidst the soothing tones of live music every Friday and Saturday.
My Buddies Pizza celebrates 20 years of dishing up the hand-tossed pizzas, calzones, and sandwiches on its extensive menu, served in a family eatery furnished with blinking arcade games. Pepper the cheesy base of an extra-large pie with two toppings, choosing from a veritable cornucopia of fresh ingredients, including chorizo, candied pecans, and refried beans. Iceberg verdures shroud fresh bushels of cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, and pepperoncinis within large salads, and diners irrigate arid palates with frosty chalices of Coke, Dr. Pepper, or Sprite. Afterward, patrons can admire the eatery’s wall-mounted TVs or take their 20 tokens to the spacious game room in pursuit of My Buddies’ prizes and 8-bit contenders.
In the late 1930s, Giuseppe “Nino” Rolla’s sons watched as crackling flames browned delicate coffee beans in their father’s small Venetian café. In the mid-1990s, Giuseppe’s grandson Nicolo brought his family’s brewing heritage with him when he moved to the States, establishing Enne Caffe—named for the “N” in Nino—with his wife Samantha. Inside the café, a 7-foot-tall computerized roaster imported from Turkey prepares single-origin beans from Venezuela, Colombia, and other countries, and Nicolo, a bean-spotting virtuoso, uses finely tuned senses of sight and smell to monitor each small batch. Drawing on family lore, Nicolo re-creates Nino’s blends with a historian’s accuracy and fixes up modern english-toffee-flavored coffees whenever Dickensian orphans request them. Enne Caffe also stocks teas flavored with japanese sencha and tropical fruits, Monin flavored syrups, and smoothie bases that transform into frothy, spicy chai or white chocolate when mingled with ice in a blender. Enne Caffe fills cups in more than 80 businesses, such as restaurants and cafés, and delivers parcels directly to customers’ homes, where vacuum-sealed bags bearing the roasters’ red-and-white logo stand out against decorous porches or the dark mouths of inhabited caves.
The talented chefs at Grapes & Tomatoes prepare exquisite and complex pizzas, entrees, and nightly specials, pairing them with a selection of 35 wines. Hungering mouths bite into the succulent poached pear pizza ($15), whose eponymous fruit delivers soft flavors and sassy backtalk alongside gorgonzola, prosciutto, caramelized onions, arugula, and walnuts. A salad topped with seared watermelon backed up by a trio of feta cheese, fresh basil, and balsamic vinegar ($7) satisfies taste buds, and steamed black mussels ($13) swim in garlic white-wine nectar. As a shiny black piano serenades guests in the dining room, glasses of California wines ($5+) placate palates with whispers of grapes and tales of cowboys who conquered their frontiers.
The team at Raviolis weaves fresh ingredients into a tapestry of upscale Italian eats including specialty stuffed pastas and savory antipasti platters. The chef, Chef Jeff D. Massey, brings expert dedication to the kitchen, having mastered French fusion, modern Southern, and Italian cuisines. Raviolis furnishes a full catering menu for special occasions, and aspiring sous-chefs can garner the kitchen knowledge needed to feed their own parties with Raviolis’s seasonal cooking classes. Framed, vintage-style posters line the dining-room walls, and patrons clink glasses of boutique local wines over white tablecloths and enjoy regular events, such as prix fixe chef specialty meals. The flickering flames of tabletop candles waltz to the beat of live music and entertainment each Saturday night.
Using only a loop of cotton thread and a careful eye, the threading specialists at The Brow Shop lift away unwanted hair. They can shape brows into clean arches, defuzz any part of the face, and even thread the arms, leaving them smooth and bare. The process is well suited for sensitive skin, as it adheres directly to hairs rather than to the flesh that surrounds them. Visitors to the salon can also find powders and gels to tint the brows and hold them in place.
Armed with recipes from their Sicilian family members, Larry and Rose Lepley opened their first Mama Rose’s Pizzeria in Huntingdon Beach in 1976—partly with the help of kids from the neighborhood, who cleaned and painted in exchange for pizza. After the unassuming restaurant began to win local awards, the Lepleys and their five children opened a second location. Their son Joe eventually took over the business, moving the bustling pizza joint to Murrieta, where it continues to serve the same family recipes it has since the beginning. Mama Rose's took first place in the Press-Enterprise's 2012 Readers' Choice Awards for Best Slice of Pizza—a slice available with a traditional sturdy Sicilian crust or with a gluten-free base. In addition to meatballs, sausage, and olives, diners can also add ingredients such as breaded eggplant, cashews, and salami.
Beyond pizza, there are toasted sandwiches, pasta dinners, and breadsticks topped with house-made garlic butter and kisses blown from an Italian grandmother. A more recent additiion to the menu is a selection of wines from Leoness Cellars in Temecula, chosen to pair well with such desserts as a sticky apple pizza and New York–style cheesecake.