Pioneering Italians were not only the first to put tomatoes in cuisine, they were also the first people to take photographs of themselves pretending to hold up the Leaning Tower of Pisa. Delight in their inventiveness with today's Groupon: for $10, you get $20 worth of Italian fare at Pastameli of New York in West Vancouver's Caulfeild Village Shopping Centre.
Pastameli bequeaths to hungry Vancouverites succulent pizzas and pastas fashioned from time-honoured family recipes. Circular appetites can indulge while dispelling their fears of sharp edges with New York–style pizzas, such as the tangy barbecue chicken ($10.65–$27) or the mouth-melting Inferno, topped with specialty-made Italian sausage ($13.35–$33). Mollify lunch munchies with a Genoa salami panini layered with strata of veggies, provolone cheese, and pesto dressing ($7.75), or play mouth-croquet with the contents of an italian meatball sandwich ($10.95). The dinner menu highlights pasta options from earth and sea in a mélange as diverse as Pangaea's alter egos. Twirl the Neptune Classic's jumbo shrimp, sea scallops, and fettuccine around oversize forks ($14.95–$18.95), or use them to gingerly open the meaty ravioli bolognese's edible envelopes ($12.50–$16.50).
Pastameli's cozy interior is surrounded by cushy high-backed booths, which foster covert conversations between satisfied stomachs. A smiling portrait of Mama Pastameli, whose recipes spawned the menus, overlooks the dining room. Chow-hounds who prefer to get their noodle fixes al fresco can swarm outdoor tables scattered among abundant floral bouquets and boxes.