Once again, our friends Norm and Linda told us about a new restaurant in the area. The difference this time was that they’d just heard about it but hadn’t eaten there yet.
So…the following day our goal for dinner was this new ‘undiscovered’ and ‘untried’ dining opportunity. Off we went!
This is Amici, a new Italian Restaurant on East Broadway Avenue in the Five Point Community in the eastern portion of Maryville Tennessee. We were told that they’d only been open about 3 months now. We would have expected a restaurant like this to be located closer to the downtown area.
As their website states, “AMICI PIZZA + PASTA + BEER!” “Food has consistently been a contributing factor to creating friendships. Our food reflect this theme: simple with a focus on quality ingredients that can create lasting impressions. We also like beer…”
For us the interior of Amici is elegantly sparse…minimalist with class. Seating runs the gamut from side by side tables along the walls, tables for 4 freestanding, seating at the bar and that large communal table with stools in the second photo.
I personally don’t like side by side tables as any conversations are ‘shared’ with adjoining tables…it’s all about a lack of privacy. The communal table was quite busy by the time we left…and patrons were still coming in.
Happy hour is from 5 PM to 6 PM with a dollar off any beer served in this window. Love the names for some of these craft beers! “Country Boy Shotgun Wedding”, “Foothills Sexual Chocolate” and “Wicked Weed Napolean Complex” were among my favorite names.
We like beer and the beer menu had plenty of variety so we started our culinary adventure with a couple of brews. Laurie had the “Dogfish Head Flesh and Blood”, an IPA from Milton Delaware, and I had the “Founders Solid Gold”, a lager from Grand Rapids Michigan. Both enjoyable brews were $6.00 less the dollar off for happy hour.
I ordered a Caesar Salad to go with my entrée. ($7.00) Laurie didn’t want to order a salad because she wanted to be able to finish and enjoy her entrée but she did want to try my salad. Our well informed, helpful and pleasant waiter John, readily provided a plate so we could share. We both really liked Amici’s version of this classic salad.
We love thin crust pizza! We decided that I’d order one as my entrée and Laurie would venture elsewhere on the menu. If I’d ordered one of the 5 ‘house specialty’ pizzas, (ranging in cost from $14.00 - $17.00), we could have gotten $2.00 off during happy hour.
However I decided to ‘build’ a custom pizza. The base price is $12.00 with $1.00, $2.00 or $3.00 for different added toppings. For my pizza, I chose the Pomodoro base with cheese and added Calabrian Chili’s ($1.00), Pepperoni and Italian Sausage ($2.00 each)
Given our geographical history we loved the extra thin Midwest style crust and the excellent Italian sausage! Laurie really liked the fact that it was cut in squares or rectangles...which is what she was used to in St. Louis Missouri.
This was a top notch pizza although I must admit that the Pomodoro tomato sauce was a little sweet for me. Amici’s owner/chef, Chris Thompson, stopped by our table to get some feedback and he told me that I would probably prefer the olive oil and garlic base…a helpful hint for our next visit.
Laurie ordered the Smoked Chicken Alfredo. ($16.00) This entrée came with penne pasta, caramelized Cipollini onions, Pecorino and Taleggio cream and Brocolini. The sauce was not at all heavy and Laurie really enjoyed Amici’s version of chicken Alfredo!
One big plus is that Amici’s makes their own pasta. (Laurie witnessed one of the chefs assistant making it!) The pasta menu is small with only 5 choices. This definitely helps to ensure consistency and quality for every freshly made serving.
We were going to skip dessert but our waiter told us about their homemade gelato. Laurie decided to go with the cherry gelato, server John's favorite, and I went for the coffee gelato. ($6.00 each) My choice was very good indeed and Laurie’s fell into the excellent category!
We chatted with the owner/chef (Chris Thompson) for a bit and learned that this was his first restaurant venture on his own but that he’d been in the restaurant business for 20 years…since he was 15. His last stop in the area was at the upscale and excellent Foothills Milling Company in Maryville. As a matter of fact, Amici occupies the building that formerly served as the Foothills Milling Company Bakery! He’d spent a number of years working at various restaurants in the Chicago area… I have several food dislikes but he assured me that since everything is made from scratch, he could modify his pasta entrees to match my wishes.
We will return to Amici soon! This restaurant is located at 1420 East Broadway in Maryville Tennessee. They are open for lunch Wednesday – Sunday from 11 AM – 3 PM and for dinner from 5 PM until 10 PM. Phone: 865-724-1710. Website: http://amicimaryville.com/.
Just click on any of the photos to enlarge them…
Thanks for stopping by to see what was for dinner!
Take Care, Big Daddy Dave
The sparseness of the interior is right up my alley, friend David. The free standing tables not so much. Glad you enjoyed the food and the beer :) The menu is not legible, so I wonder whether they offer cauliflower crust pizza as well? Love, cat.ReplyDelete
Sounds like a great new find and everything looks deliciousReplyDelete
The pizza and pasta look delicious! The gelato looks good too. Thanks for the review. If I'm ever in that area, I would certainly visit Amici's.ReplyDelete
Ha-ha, an Italian restaurant??? I couldn't miss this. That pizza is my favorite, to tell you the truth here the pizza is very thin, but I like the thick one I used to eat in New York.ReplyDelete