When I lived in New Berlin, I received a flyer in the mail for Armeliâ€™s Restaurant & Pizzeria, 16201 W. National Ave. My arm didnâ€™t need any twisting to visit for the Sunday night buffet featuring pizza, pasta and broasted chicken. Thatâ€™s when I became a fan of its thin crust pizza.
The buffet also includes soup, pasta and a salad bar and is available from 4 to 8 p.m. on Sunday evenings and from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Monday through Friday.
Anthony "Tony" Armeli opened his restaurant in 1988 and still owns it today.
When entering the building, youâ€™ll find the lounge on your left, stocked with a full bar. The reception window is across from the entrance while the dining room is to the right of the entrance.
The dining room is dimly lit and features an enclosed fireplace surrounded by tables and booths.
The menu at Armeliâ€™s is large and features appetizers, pizza, sandwiches, soups, salads, seafood, broasted chicken and pastas, including a pasta sampler of lasagna, mostaccioli and manicotti topped with spaghetti sauce for only $12.75.
Friday nights feature a cod fish fry for $13.95, breaded walleye for $17.95 and a new special menu item, Cod Puttanesca, which is cod filets cooked in a chunky tomato sauce with kalamata olives, capers, garlic and crushed red peppers for only $15.00.
Armeliâ€™s has also added its own version of the popular dinner for two specials with "2 for $22." Diners choose two entrees from lasagna, manicotti, spaghetti or penne with meatballs or meatless sauce, or a six ounce sirloin steak or smothered chicken with mashed potatoes. Soup, salad and Italian bread is also included.
Also new on the menu are eight-inch, sauce-less specialty pizzas such as the Tuscano, Milano, Calabria and the Caprese.
The Milano is topped with extra virgin olive oil, shredded romano cheese, mozzarella, artichoke hearts, kalamata olives, feta and sun-dried tomatoes.
The Tuscano is topped with garlic butter, pepperjack cheese, fresh mozzarella, mushrooms, sausage and bacon.
Armeliâ€™s pizzas come in sizes of 8, 12, 14, 16 and 18 inches. Cheese pizzas range from $8.25 for the eight inch to $18.45 for the 18-inch pie.
Additional toppings range from $.50 to $2.50, while premium toppings such as real bacon, sun-dried tomatoes, fresh mozzarella and roasted red peppers range from $2.50 for the 12-inch pizza to $6.60 for the 18-inch.
Pizzas are typically served on thin crust, but a thick crust is also available.
I started out with the Tuscano on my visit. It was served on a wooden pizza peel, which I really only noticed after I had eaten half of the pizza. Instead my eyes were focused on the way the color of the bacon stood out against the canvas of fresh, white mozzarella cheese.
After I took the first bite, I didnâ€™t want to stop. Other than the bacon and the fresh mozzarella, none of the toppings really stood out but all worked together to create a savory symphony.
The crust remained crispy despite the delicious garlic butter that coated the crust and the wooden peel. I wouldnâ€™t mind going back to try the other three specialty pies.
I needed a refresher on their pizza sauce, so I ordered a thick crust pizza with sausage, pepperoni and pepperoncinis on thick crust.
I would describe the thick crust as a hand-tossed double crust. It was slightly crisp and chewy. It was the first time Iâ€™ve had Armeliâ€™s thick crust, and I really liked it.
The pizza sauce was liberally applied and slightly on the spicy side. The flavors of the sauce and Italian sausage worked well together. The pepperoni didnâ€™t seem to add much to the flavor combination, but tasted great when I picked it up and ate it separately.
Pepperoncini was added sparingly, which I appreciated, so it didnâ€™t dominate the taste of the pizza while still accenting the flavors of the other toppings.
I was able to experience the flavors all over again the next day thanks to the leftovers.
I canâ€™t imagine Armeli ever thought he would be celebrating the 25th anniversary of a successful restaurant when he immigrated to the United States from Sicily.
On my visit, the restaurant was packed with happy diners. Hereâ€™s to another 25 years!
No Talkbacks for this article.
Post your comment/review now
Disclaimer: Please note that Facebook comments are posted through Facebook and cannot be approved, edited or declined by OnMilwaukee.com. The opinions expressed in Facebook comments do not necessarily reflect those of OnMilwaukee.com or its staff.
Recent Articles & Blogs by Rick Rodriguez
Published Sept. 7, 2016
In his 100th pizza blog, Rick ventures out to Waukesha where, upon the recommendation of a friend or two, he tries pizza, garlic cheese bread and ponza rottas from Jimmy's Grotto. What's a ponza rotta? Well, you'll have to read to find out.
Published Aug. 3, 2016
Rick Rodriguez says he doesn't think he's ever written about a pizza place as new as Fixture Pizza Pub. In this installment of his pizza blog, he gives the lowdown on the space, the food and a few other interesting facts about the owners and offerings.
Published July 15, 2016
Rick Rodriguez is often asked "who makes the best pizza?" or "who makes your favorite pizza?" The latter is a difficult question to answer, and the former is nearly impossible to answer. Still, here are some his top picks for Milwaukee pizza.
Published July 6, 2016
Sometimes Rick Rodriguez looks in unexpected places for pizza - like Shaker's Cigar Bar, for instance. But does this venue that regularly gets onto lists of the most haunted bars in America make the cut when it comes to delicious pizza?
Published June 1, 2016
Despite a sizable menu that includes hand-tossed pizzas, pizza blogger Rick Rodriguez dings Zayna's Pizza for the dense crust and a Mexican pizza on which the toppings "could use a little tweaking."
Published May 4, 2016
The folks at Carini's La Conca D'Oro have a long and storied history, with roots in Italy. They serve up authentic Neapolitan pizza, along with other Italian dishes including a variety of seafood entrees.
Published April 6, 2016
It's not often Rick Rodriguez writes about reader-selected spots. But the words "thin crust," "good pizza" and "small bar" were repeated by enough people that he felt a visit to Scotty's was warranted.
Published March 2, 2016
In addition to pizza, Albanese's offers a slew of specials, including wings, Sicilian style pork chops and Italian style fish fry on Fridays. They also happen to have gluten free pizza that's worth seeking out.
Published Feb. 3, 2016
Rick Rodriguez says the 25 minute drive to Doc's Dry Dock in Pewaukee is worth the trip, especially for their BBQ chicken pizza, which sported a crisp crust with spicy sauce and a special secret seasoning.
Published Jan. 6, 2016
Rick Rodriguez tries out Nori's Pizza, a New York-style pizza spot that opened on South 13th Street in July. The verdict? Even after just a short period, Nori's seems to be establishing a reputation for good 'za.