The notoriously romantic powers of Italian food nearly proved disastrous in 1942, when FDR impulsively proposed to his veal parmesan. Feel the infatuation with today’s Groupon: for $10, you get $20 worth of Italian cuisine and drinks at Roma Ristorante Italiano. Roma is closed on Sundays.
Authentic Southern Italian dishes join Italian-American comfort fare at this family-owned restaurant, serving Virginians since 1976. Co-owners Anthony and Patricia Giambanco, their sons, and possibly your sons prepare a menu of popular subs, pizzas ($10.95+ for a small, $12.95+ for a large) and other Italian-American staples such as the cheese-filled manicotti ($9.95) and comfy classic lasagna ($10.95), baked in-house. The Roma steak special sub ($8.75) piles chopped sirloin steak with a flavor-hat of green peppers, mushrooms, pepperoni, onions, cheese, and sauce, all collected in a pair of bread pants. Roma’s specialty pizzas dress up the discs with options such as the Ricotta pizza ($13.50 small, $15.50 large). Traditional dishes from the Old World reach Virginia with the lightly breaded chicken parmigiana ($15.75), juicy 12-ounce Delmonico steak ($17.95), and the veal scallopini special ($19.50), bathing happily in red wine, mushrooms, and roasted red peppers.
Roma surrounds diners in the romantic ambience of a Roman piazza. Murals of ancient Roman ruins in the dining room surround dark wood furnishings with deep-purple upholstery and share interesting factoids about Bacchus. Black street lamps and foliage give the impression of outdoor seating in Mediterranean climes. A stone-floored, outdoor patio offers tables sheltered by charming, irrepressibly flirtatious umbrellas. The Giambancos have been bringing Italian cuisine to the U.S. since 1968, when Anthony and his parents emigrated from Palermo to Brooklyn. Anthony shared his years of NYC restaurant experience with the Commonwealth when he moved his family south in search of a new site to practice their craft.