Cozy and urbane, this contemporary Italian American restaurant and wine bar offers everything from pizza and pasta to fresh seafood and steak. Good bets include pan-roasted mussels, zesty grilled salmon, and the savoriest version of Italian wedding soup this side of Nonna's kitchen.
Unless your mama is from Naples, well wager that the meals you serve arent nearly half as good as Valerios rustic, unpretentious food. And we doubt that you employ a staff of tall, slender waiters, who roam the room like dashing exclamation points. All-Italian wine list.
Boasting one of the very few wood-burning ovens in town, Vero turns out some of the most authentic Neapolitan-style pizza around. Owner Marc-Aurele Buholzer inherited the oven — and the space — from the previous tenant, La Gelateria. The gelato is the same, but the pizza is much improved. An airy, chewy edge blistered with char gives way to a thin, crisp inner crust supporting a few choice ingredients. These pies are meant to be enjoyed fresh from the oven.
Don't let the plain decor fool you: All the excitement you need waits on your plate at this no-nonsense Mexican restaurant, starting with the first tongue-tingling taste of the table salsa and ending with the last bite of the soft, caramely cajeta for dessert. Other faves include homemade guacamole and some of the best chiles rellenos north of the Rio Grande. Full bar, good selection of Mexican beers and tequilas.
Vincenza's serves what we'll wager is downtown's best pizza: massive wedges of savory goodness, fragrant with tasty ingredients. We are especially partial to the veggie-stuffed pizza, with mushrooms, broccoli, tomato, and essence of garlic; for a change of pace, try the to-die-for hot and crusty veggie sub. Counter service and plenty of tables in a clean, efficiently operated space that opens onto the Colonial Arcade.
That Thai cuisine now flourishes in Canal Fulton is one of life's happy culinary surprises. And for that, we give thanks to chef-owner V-Li Van Sickel, a Thai native whose comfy Stark County dining room is more down-home than exotic, and whose preparations are subtle and accessible to midwestern palates. Among our picks are the fragrant soups, smoky pad Thai, and for dessert, the enticing sweet rice with custard.
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