If you have traveled West on Navy Boulevard, before you hit Old Palafox, and you have passed by countless antique and fix it shops, you have probably seen Paisano’s Restaurant and Pizzeria. It looks like it might be a chain restaurant all shiny and new, far from it.
Actually, it was an existing building purchased about three years ago and refurbished by Will, the owner, who is Puerto Rican, and from the Bronx. His Mother was Italian, and he learned his cooking skills from her. Paisano’s opened about a year ago. Paisano means Brother in Italian, and that is what you are when you walk in the door.
“My Sister brought me to Pensacola. I looked around for a place to open a restaurant; Pensacola was missing really authentic Italian food, I saw this place for a steal, so I bought it,” Will explains. “It took me three years to refurbish this building, top to bottom.”
The interior of the restaurant is cozy, cool and lovely. There are tables, booths and larger spaces for bigger groups. Colored wine bottles are the light fixtures, making for a soothing light.
It is a great place for date night, or a big dinner with family and friends.
The menu contains a variety of appetizers, we tried the Garlic Knots, they are daily-homemade fresh dough, baked into knots, served smothered in extra-virgin olive oil and fresh minced garlic.
They come with a side of marinara. Made by the hand, not by the can, as the slogan says.
They have the traditional Italian fare; lasagna, calzones, Stromboli’s, hero’s, pizzas and salads.
The Caesar salad was tasty and fresh; the dressing was authentic. We tried the tomato basil pizza, made with ricotta and mozzarella cheese, loaded with garlic, excellent crust and cooked just right.
They have a custom-made Alfredo sauce that is the best we have ever tasted. The pasta was cooked just right.
The desserts looked great, we did not sample any on this trip, but we will next time.
Specials: Kids eat free on Monday’s and Tuesday’s. You can order take out, their menu is on-line, see the website below.
Paisano’s Restaurant and Pizzeria
WHERE: 3910 W. Navy Blvd.