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The elder statesman of Italian dining in Broward County, Elia Angelo, has opened the doors to a casual eatery
in Oakland Park, and despite attempts to have a quiet start, the restaurant was teeming with D'Angelo's devotees on opening night last Friday. The menu at D'Angelo's Pizza doesn't disappoint. It's full of affordable tapas, ceviches, pizzas, salads, calzones, and other traditional Italian eats -- and all appear to be crafted with the same attention to detail that has helped Angelo's fine dining restaurants in Fort Lauderdale and Boca Raton flourish. On opening night, a cheery Angelo made rounds to check on diners as they took their first bite and again as they finished their tiramisu.
More than a dozen varieties of pizza with red or white sauce dominate the menu and arrive perfectly crisp from a wood-fired oven that anchors an open kitchen. "It's supposed to be like you're in Italy," our server told us after we ate every
morsel of Angelo's namesake pizza -- a pie loaded with salty prosciutto,
perfectly dressed arugula, and fresh gooey mozzarella ($13). Tapas
include crispy zucchini flowers, fresh mozzarella wrapped in
prosciutto, layered eggplant Parmesan, and Italian sausage with
garlicky broccoli rabe.
The wine list has been simplified considerably from the famously sophisticated 40-plus-page list at Casa D'Angelo's
and features favorite affordable Italian varietals, such as the
Castello di Quercetto chianti ($36 a bottle). Several desserts -- each
at an affordable $5.50 -- finish out the menu. They include chocolate
soufflé, Italian cheesecake made with ricotta and a hint of orange, and
the classic, creamier New York version.
D'Angelo's Pizza, Wine Bar
& Tapas is located at 4215 N. Federal Highway. The place doesn't
take reservations, but until the website gets filled in, you can call
954-561-7300 for more information.