Criniti’s Ristorante Italiano Cucina Mediterranea Review
Criniti’s Ristorante Italiano Cucina Mediterranea (or Criniti’s Italian Restaurant) is located at 2611 South Broad Street, Philadelphia, PA 19148 (a few blocks north of the Sports Complex on the corner near Broad and Oregon). Established in 1985 by Benito Criniti, Criniti’s Restaurant is now run by his son Massimo Criniti in a larger converted church just a few steps from its old location.
Criniti’s Italian Restaurant is in a big room with stain glass windows. This building once was a church so there are many extra touches that add character to this restaurant. This particular restaurant is known for many good Italian dishes including their pastas and pizzas. Criniti’s is a great place for a couple to go on a romantic night out for dinner. However, their lunch buffet that was just started this year has been quite a success. For approximately $10 per person you have a wide variety of Italian foods to choose from including chicken parmigiana, meatballs, Italian sausage, roasted peppers, tilapia, eggplant, mussels in red gravy (Italian sauce), soup, salad, and more. Their buffet is excellent and the value brings the meal home. For the price, you know that you are getting a quality traditional Southern Italian home cooked meal for every item on the menu. This is real South Philly Little Italy food owned and operated by Philly Italians that go the extra mile for their customers.
The waitresses and staff at this Italian restaurant are by far superior as their hospitality is very warm and receptive. They may be a little slow but that is because they have to be warm and receptive to all of their customers (so bring your patience as they are nice people).
If you want to have an occasion catered, Criniti’s Italian Restaurant also does catering as well. They have a second floor that is dedicated especially for their catering business.
Let’s get to their pizza. Their pizzas are thin crust American style (cheese on top) served personal size (about 10 inches). If you would like anything other than cheese than you need to make a special order. They can accommodate you with any toppings but you have to let them know exactly what you are looking for. Their thin crust pizza is very basic but it has old world Italian charm built into it. They use a wood fired brick oven to cook their pies. The price is $7.95 for a personal pizza with $1.50 for each extra topping.
The pizza that I ordered was a plain cheese pie. The crust was thin yet not too far from traditional pizza as it had a little weight to it. The pizza crust was foldable, not crackly, and had a nice handle on it to hold the slices. It also did not have any signs of charring yet it was cooked well. The pizza was very cheesy with signs of oregano and/or parsley showing through the cheese. The tomato sauce was sweet but there was a very thin coat below the cheese to make it barely noticeable. The dish that the pizza was served on was not flat but slightly high at the edges (a bowl form). This created an effect of the pizza to be dipping towards the center of the bowl due to the edges being higher than the center of the pie. This wasn’t a problem just an observation.
Overall, I was very impressed with the pizza and the total package at Criniti’s Italian Restaurant. This is the type of gourmet Italian pizza/food restaurant that you can eat as many courses as you need (Italian style) for a reasonable price.
Criniti’s Italian Restaurant – Welcome to the Best Philadelphia Pizza Club!