Tony C’s is named after co-owner Tony Ciola, whose family has been in the restaurant business since 1949. Ciola is a Vera Pizza Napoletana-trained pizzaiolo and a Level 1 sommelier. With Tony C’s Pizza & Beer Garden, Ciola wanted to recreate the New York street pizza vibe, hence a location with an ample outdoor patio and a snazzy yet approachable interior. In addition to pizza, his menu hosts various appetizers such as garlic knots, zucchini stocks, and Grandma Ciola’s meatballs; a half-dozen salads; a couple sandwiches; lasagna; a kid’s menu; and a family-pack to-go menu. Pie-wise, Tony C’s offers up a dozen specialty pies, including a Pizza of the Month. There are vegetarian options as well a gluten-free crust option. The beer selection is solid with more than 30 on tap and another dozen and a half bottles and cans ranging from Uncle Bob’s favorite (Bud Light) to Pint House’s Electric Jellyfish.
Our first foray was take-out where we tried the Toasted Ravioli (cheese ravioli, Italian breadcrumbs, and marinara; $8) and two pies, the Mama Mia (pepperoni, pizza sauce, Italian sausage, and extra cheese; $15) and the Prosciutto and Goat Cheese (roasted garlic, prosciutto, arugula, fresh mozzarella, goat cheese, and olive oil; $15). The Toasted Ravioli were crunchy and zippy when dipped in the zesty tomato sauce. The pies are New York style, so the crusts are thin and pliable with a thick and crunchy edge.
On a second visit to try out the patio, we found the staff friendly and helpful while we ordered and enjoyed the Homemade Lasagna (Italian sausage, ground beef, marinara, ricotta, mozzarella, and parmesan; $14) and the Spinach & Goat Cheese Salad (pancetta crisp, croutons, goat cheese, egg, cherry tomatoes, red onions, and honey mustard vinaigrette; $11). We both wow’d the lasagna, a baptism of immersive tomato flavor and lavish cheese-and-beef richness. Ordering is fast casual (and indoors). Insider tip: Order a small side salad with your lasagna and get an extra garlic knot for your plate (plus whatever benefits a salad gives you).
I wrote this review for the Allandale Neighbor.
– meh [think twice]
* OK [it’ll get the job done]
** good [solid neighborhood joint]
*** damn good [we’ll definitely be back]
**** yippity-yikes that was amazeballs [fantastic; one of the best]
***** holy sh!t [transcendental; best of the best] each $ = $10; cost is based on a typical dinner entrée and appetizer (no drinks)
each $ = $10; cost is based on a typical dinner entrée and appetizer (no drinks)