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Italian (Kid-Friendly) in Fresno

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Hi, Friends;

My 13 and 17 year olds are coming with us to some unyet identified place in Fresno for Italian tonight. Pizza buffets are not appealing, Olive Garden no, DiCicci's is locally popular but I am a but suspicious of a place that has 12 locations, Ovidio's looks like a possibility but is said to be a bit overpriced. Deli's-good but too casual, looking for a place with decent pasta dishes. Have read mixed reviews of a number of others. Any ideas? Thanks to the local crew.

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  1. The DiCicco's on Shaw near Van Ness (2221 W Shaw Ave, Fresno, CA‎ - (559) 221-6338) is a good location. La Rocca's on N. 1st near Herndon is another great restaurant, although a little pricier.

    1. Check out this site:

      www.mothermarys.com

      6 Replies
      1. re: Gail

        Mother Mary's food is good but it take out. The Champlain and Perrin one for sure is only takeout and I believe the original one at Blackstone and Herdnon is as well.

        Ovidio's used to be very good and I liked the restaurant. Haven't been in a while though. There's also Gigi's at Friant and Fort Washington. Other than that I'd say La Rocca's. Their newer place, Five, is okay but I think it's a bit overpriced.

        ETA:
        Oh, I just remembered!!!!!!!!!!! Go to the place where Senses used to be. Its called "Oggi" or something like that. Very very good. Is located just south of Olive on Wishon.

        1. re: tavmark

          oops, sorry didn't realize MM was take-out only. Probably too late, but check out Casa Mariani II Herndon/Cedar, Save Mart strip mall side.

          1. re: Gail

            My wife reports Casa Mariani II has gone belly-up. I think it was in October/November. I don't know why or if they plan to re-open.

            The last time I ate there this summer I sent my lunch back because the meatballs were over-cooked to a rock-hard state.

          2. re: tavmark

            That should be just south of Olive on Maroa (east side).

            1. re: PolarBear

              Thanks (again) PB. I may not describe it at the right intersection, but I could drive you there. :)))

            2. re: tavmark

              Anyone tried Mother Mary's meatballs? I'm having company and need an easy dinner so was thinking of Spag/meatballs. I have the sauce, but didn't want to bother with making the meatballs. Also, would not rule out the lasagna if you think it's good.
              Thanks...

          3. This may be a tad late but...

            I have always had great food at Ovidio's. Typically I do not order the entrees (steak, chicken or lamb - although the lamb dinner is wonderful and a steal at $23), but the pizza and pasta dishes. I love the pizzettas, wonderful flat/thin crust with various toppings. I usually get the 4 formaggi with extra garlic (lovely breath afterwards!!) and take half home for breakfast. I think that the prices are affordable and equivalent to other Italian restaurants within that caliber (i.e. La Rocca's, Guilia's). Also, Frank (owner) was born and raised in Italy and he is in the kitchen cooking every day, he doesn't leave the kitchen duties to a hired chef, but oversees and cooks all dishes that go out. I think that is very admirable.

            I haven't been to La Rocca's in quite some time, but from what I have heard the food is still as good as always. Five has always been hit and miss for me, but others have had great experiences - it is less of a "homey" type Italian place, more upscale and shiny. I have never had a bad dish at Mike's (Marks and Shaw), and LOVE his chicken cacciatore.

            Good luck!!