Tuesday’s Treats #181

Mezzaluna Brick Oven Tap House

Location: Hendersonville, NC

This place is a great place to enjoy a nice lunch. It has a great atmosphere, and the staff is friendly. There are nice wooden booths, tables and chairs and a large high top bar. If you have a really large party, they’ve even got a really cool HUGE booth that will seat a gazillion. lol.

What is surprising is the menu. The host gave us about four of them, a regular lunch menu, a daily specials, a daily lunch cordials and then, the wine list. For the most part, it seems to be an italian fare, with build your own pizza (wood fire, brick oven), calzones, etc. However, the surprise was on the daily specials, they offered grilled swordfish, Chilean Sea Bass and grilled salmon and chicken marsala. It doesn’t really strike you as a “fancy” italian restaurant, but the menu defining offers it.

The cheese moons, pepperoni pizza, lasagna and calzone we ordered were all amazing. The cheese moons are just like mozzarella sticks, except in the shape of half moons, and they are yummy. Our son asked for Parmesan for his pizza, and the waiter brought fresh grated Parmesan on a side plate. Wow. The lasagna was like homemade, and I was so thankful I ordered the lunch special of 1/2 an order and a side salad. I could barely finish it, and my husband ate some of the salad. It was definitely a generous portion. The calzone was chocked full of the ingredients (you decide), and the crust was very tasty and just the right consistency: soft on the inside, cooked with a bit of a crunch on the outside and bottom.

Website

Tuesday’s Treats #177

Ian & JoJo’s Italian Restaurant & Pizzeria

Location: Waynesville, NC

This place was AMAZING!! They have only been open for about four months (about 6 when this posts), and they’re doing a fantastic job! The restaurant has a nice comfortable feel, and there are both booths and tables and chairs from which to choose. They also have a large meeting room for big families or gatherings.

The food was absolutely incredible. We ordered the stuffed garlic knots to begin. Oh. My. I could have just made those my meal! The garlic and butter made the rolls delicious, but then add the mozzarella and pepperoni… Holy! Moly!

Our youngest ordered the pepperoni pizza, and our oldest ordered the fettuccine Alfredo. My husband ordered the chicken panini, and I ordered the lasagna. Everything tasted fresh, homemade, and incredible. We would have to say the lasagna ‘took the prize.’ You could taste each individual ingredient, but they blended to create a culinary ‘phenomenon.’ As our oldest said, “It’s like an explosion of flavor in your mouth!” DELICIOUS!!

The owner even came to our table after we were done to make sure everything was satisfactory. She was precious.

Website

Tuesday’s Treats #168

*My apologies to anyone who reads Tuesday’s Treats, and you’ve wondered where they’ve been! They’re back online, and, hopefully, here to stay for awhile!😉*

Marco’s Trattoria

Location: Brevard, NC

We dropped by here after a long day of traveling, and we had plans to simply feed our teenage son and get a “little bite of something.” Well, a bread basket, two soups, salad, cheese pizza (for son), and an entree of baked halibut later, we left stuffed!! 😂 Everything was delicious, and we will definitely be back!

The italian bread basket is served with an olive oil/herb mix that is incredible. The tomato basil soup and crab bisque was amazing, and the halibut was tasty. We ordered both soups, because we wanted to taste each. I think we both enjoyed the tomato basil a bit more than the crab, but each one was unique and delicious.

The baked halibut had a lemon garlic sauce and topped with crab meat. Halibut is one of my favorite fish, and you can’t find it all the time; thus, the reason we splurged. Honestly, I’m not sure I’d order it again. It was definitely tasty, but we both decided we like grilled or blackened halibut best. The salad was also tasty, as was the pizza.

They do make the pizzas with King Arthur’s non-bleached, non-bromated flour; so, that made me very happy. (It’s better for you… if you can consider pizza “healthy.”😂) If you’ve not had this type, it’s makes the crust a tad bit sweeter and more filling than regular pizza dough, and the ingredients on top were delicious! They have several “pre-made” types, and they have a build-your-own choice with a plethora of toppings.

The atmosphere is nice, and there are tables and chairs, as well as, a few booths and outdoor seating. We are here on a Monday night, and the host asked if we had reservations. We didn’t and we’re led to a nice corner table, but when a booth opened up, we did ask if we could move there. The waitress said she’s have to see if it was reserved; so, apparently, if you want a particular seat I think the house, be sure to call ahead.

Here is the website to find more information.

Tuesday’s Treats #158

Lucullus Nero Authentic Italian Dining

Location: Frankfurt, Germany Airport

The Frankfurt airport didn’t really seem to have a ton of restaurants from which to choose, but it may have just been the terminal we were in. However, we chose to eat at Lucullus, because they had comfortable seating, and I can always go for Italian.

We definitely had a ton of food, and everything was tasty. I wouldn’t say it was amazing, but it was airport food; so, my expectations weren’t too high anyway.

The Chicken Caesar was good. I definitely couldn’t eat it all with the mound of lasagne I received. The lasagna was really good, maybe not my favorite, but it was good. My husband got a steak with potatoes and grilled veggies. Again, it was very tasty. Our sons got burgers and fries, and they both enjoyed their meals.

I couldn’t find a website for this place, but here is the google search address.

Tuesday’s Treats #146

Ippolito’s Italian Restaurant

Location: Suwanee, Ga

Ok, so anyone who knows me here, knows I LOVE desserts! If you’re looking for a great place for atmosphere, dinner AND desserts, you should make a trip to Ippolito’s. I hadn’t been here in a couple of years, because we got burned a couple of times after loving it for awhile, but they surely redeemed themselves!

About 18 girlfriends met up for a fun Girls Night Out last week, and I couldn’t have been happier with the evening. The atmosphere was festive, not just for us, but because the restaurant is located in the Town Center, and they were having a cornhorn competition, it filled up pretty quick. The service was great, even if the poor guy was the only server, and they added 2 more large tables in his section! 🙄🤦‍♀️

The food was incredible. We started with two different apps, the Gorgonzola chips and the Pepe. Yeah, I know you’re probably curious to know what those are all about! The homemade chips were crispy and covered with the Gorgonzola cheese, chunked tomatoes, diced cherry peppers and ranch dressing drizzle. The Pepe is a delicious dish of spicy Italian sausage wrapped in a homemade pizza dough, brushed with honey, baked and served on a bed of marinara sauce. Oh. My. Both of these were a big hit at our tables!

They bring huge Parmesan rolls and marinara to your table to start. Yum! I ordered a Caesar salad and lasagna for my meal. Several around me ordered a few different items. There were several lasagnas, chicken & spinach cannelloni, manicotti, and spaghetti. Everyone said they enjoyed their meals, and several of us decided to save just a little more room for desserts. Those things look divine in the display case!!

They have this million dollar cake that is supposed to be phenomenal. There were no pieces left when we made our order. One of the girls got the black & white cake, which was just as good! It’s this chocolate brownie, cheesecake, chocolate mousse cake “devil!” 😂 Another young lady got the cookies and cream cheesecake, and I got the tiramisu. The cheesecake was yummy, and my tiramisu would have been amazing, if it wasn’t supposed to be tiramisu. Lol.

Let me explain. It was a very tasty dish; however, it didn’t have the deep espresso flavoring or “mousse/cake” texture and appearance of a traditional tiramisu. This dish is three scoops of “tiramisu,” drizzled with chocolate, almost as if they “stirred” the tiramisu and then served it as ice cream. The texture was almost that of a soft, stirred cake or crumble (not as crunchy as a crisp). Honestly, it wasn’t bad! I just had my heart set on a traditional tiramisu, and it ended up being a bit of a disappointment. However, it was a blessing for one of the husbands whose wife took it home with her leftovers for his dinner and dessert! 😉😂

We will definitely be back for the meal and the million dollar cake! … if you need directions or menu options, you can check out their Website here.

Tuesday’s Treats #101

DePalma’s Italian Cafe

Location: Dacula, Ga

We have been to the location in Athens years ago, but this was our first visit to the new Dacula location. The atmosphere is really cool, and the staff is friendly.

We ordered breadsticks, Caesar salad, chicken Alfredo, lasagna and pizza for our part of five. We were sure we’d have to-go boxes to take home; yet, these were all items we wanted to try.

They, also, brought “house bread” tot he table before the meal; so, we had plenty of bread and carbs! Ha ha. The house bread was homemade Italian, served with a olive oil/balsamic dish to dip. The balsamic definitely has a tangy kick, but it was delicious. I could have eaten the whole plate as my meal.

The breadsticks can be made with meatballs and opinions or spinach and onions, but we just opted for cheese. These were fresh made and delicious as well. As I mentioned before, this was a lot of bread; so, I was trying to moderate myself. The Caesar salad came just in Time, and it was scrumptious. The dressing was just right, and the romaine was crispy and fresh and the Parmesan just right.

Next came out meal that we didn’t think we’d finish because of all we had already enjoyed. My husband and son split the pizza. It was half pepperoni and half sausage, pepperoni, mushrooms and green peppers. As far as pizzas go, I do like a little thicker crust, but it was tasty and definitely worth ordering again. Our oldest and his girl had chicken fettuccine Alfredo with broccoli, and they said each of theirs was good. I had the lunch lasagna (with the salad), and although, it was definitely a different kind of lasagna than I’m used to, with its spinach, ricotta cheese and a small bit of meat all topped with bread crumbs, it was still delicious. Surprisingly, I ate the whole serving.

Yes, we did have a bit of leftovers, but not as much as I expected. I’d have to say, I have a few other favorite italian restaurants, but this one is pretty good. We’ll probably be back again.

To find out more, you can check them out online.

Tuesday’s Treats #74

Antoneta’s Italian

Location: Dacula, GA

Antoneta’s is a great Italian restaurant, and it’s not a local kept secret; so, you’ll want to get there early. The rolls are amazing as is everything else! The calzone is monster big, and it’s cooked to perfect – crunchy on the outside, hot and delicious on the inside. The salads are great, too. The atmosphere and staff is just as good, and the owner will probably be there to help with anything you might need. If you hear him talk back and forth with his employees, you’ll feel as if you’re in an authentic Italian restaurant. Check them out on the web here. They don’t have a website. This is only the google search, but it will give you the hours and a little more information. 😉 Hope you enjoy!

Tuesday’s Treats #62

ML’s Italian Life Cafe and The Cellar

Location: Blairsville, Ga


I have actually done a review on this restaurant before; however, because we had only had desserts at this new location, I thought it only fitting to review again. This new location has brought a few changes and adjustments to both the atmosphere and menu choices, but after today, I do believe I like this one even better than the old. 


The desserts are still some of the best you can find, and because they are made fresh daily, the choices will vary from time to time. However, each one is decadent and served with the utmost class and quality. The coffee is delicious, perfectly balanced in strength and sweetness, and the atmosphere, in which you dine, is incredible. 

This new location actually has two parts. If you park in the downtown square, you can easily walk into the upstairs cafe. However, we are a little biased to the downstairs, “Cellar,” as it’s named for its basement locale. A simple walk around the building and down the steps will take you there. Complete with brick walls, low-lying ceilings with exposed beams, and the smell of a fresh ground brew, this place makes you want to grab a good book or good company, hold a cup of joe in hand and stay a long while. 

The quaint seating arrangements, black tablecloths and rich place settings in the “cellar” type surrounds make you feel you’ve just stepped into another time and place. Everything we ordered was absolutely incredible. Our party of four chose the Five Cheese Tortelloni, Italian Wedge, Chicken Wrap and Pasta Sorrento. All the portions were huge, and Oh. My. Goodness. I cannot describe to you the palette delight! The tortelloni was stuffed with mozzarella, fontina, Parmesan, grana padano and Romano cheese, topped with a house made marinara, and served with your choice of meatballs or sausage. My husband chose both. I didn’t taste the sausage, but the meatballs were to die for, so rich and flavorful. 


The Italian Wedge was beyond what I could have imagined with the ginormous serving. The savory baked balsamic chicken was a perfect blend of deliciousness with the Gorgonzola cheese and applewood bacon. It is normally served with blue cheese dressing and tomatoes, but as I attest both, I opted for a side of the Italian with feta cheese and a side of the garlic Parmesan. I don’t which I liked better. I could not believe how much I enjoyed this, because as much as I like salad, it’s not a “top of the list” choice when it comes to entrees, especially when indulging in an Italian cuisine. Yet, this day, I am so glad I “preferred just a salad.” 

The chicken wrap was just as large and tasty, as was the Pasta Sorrento. There was so much food, we almost opted out of dessert. However, the chocolate peanut butter brownie pie with a side latte called our name out a little too loudly to be ignored. My husband and brother-in-law devoured that yumminess while my sister-in-law and I sipped a cup of delicious Vanilla Nut Latte topped with caramel. It was a perfect ending to a perfect meal. 

We so enjoyed this new, inviting location that, had it not been we had other things on our agenda that day, I believe we could have sat around enjoying the atmosphere and good conversation until dinner time rolled in. We will definitely be back again and again. 

Oh, one more note to mention…they also have fresh pressed olive oils and balsamic vinegars. There are samples to taste, and you can even “sample” these with your entrees. I did try the White Coconut Balamic Vinegar with my chicken, and it tasted just like the best coconut chicken I’ve ever had. These are available for sale as well, and there were several Italian and French imports from which to choose. 


Check out more here on their website. 

Tuesday’s Treats #58

Rotolo’s Pizzeria

Location: Gulf Breeze, FL

This place is great! We found it on a recent trip to Florida, and we will definitely be making it one of our “go-tos” while on the coast. Rotol’s has a great atmosphere, and the staff are friendly and helpful. I love the brick walls and motif, and they have booths, tables and chairs, as well as, high tops and chairs to accommodate all types of seating endeavors.

The pizza was incredible, and I wish it hadn’t been so late, because I so wanted to eat the whole pan! However, I suppose, it was a good thing, because I would never go to a pizza joint to get a soup and salad. Yet, that’s exactly what I did, and I didn’t regret it one bit! You get to pick your soup and your salad; so, I chose the tomato basil soup with the spinach, cranberry, walnut salad. It was delicious!!


We will definitely be back again and again! Check out their website for more information, menu items and their various locations. Evidently, you can enjoy Rotolo’s not only when you are in Florida but in Alabama, Louisiana and Texas, too! It is so good, you’ll want to try it!

Tuesday’s Treats #56

Caprese NY Pizza and Pasta

Location: Dacula, Ga

 

This little Italian place is good for a quick lunch or early dinner. I wouldn’t say it’s really a “date night” place, but that is to each one’s opinion. The place is small, but they have a lunch buffet during the weekdays that is pretty good. I’d have to rate this place with a solid “B+.” The food is definitely good. It’s not the best Italian I’ve ever had, yet, definitely not the worst either.

The meal was filling and tasty. My son and I ordered the personal pizza (10′), garlic rolls and a salad (for me). We still had one piece of pizza left over and a roll. We got a half pepperoni and half “the works.” The Greek salad I got was really good, and the Italian dressing had a strong oil and herb base, but it was delicious. Like I said, the pizza was tasty, but I wasn’t crazy about the Italian sausage on it. It just wasn’t as flavorful as I like Italian sausage to be; so, I did take that off. The rolls were just kind of average, but the garlic butter they were swimming in was delicious. I dipped my pizza crust in it! I do apologize for not getting a pic of the pizza. I had put away my camera by the time it came, and I completely forgot! 🙄

The restaurant is very clean, and the staff is very friendly. For a Saturday afternoon around 2:00pm, they had a decent crowd coming and going, too. So, if you’re in the area, you might give them a try. Here’s the website to find the location and menu items.