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Success is spreading for Italian Village Pizza

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By Bob Karlovits
Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2012

Frank Veltri II says there is no secret to the success of Italian Village Pizza in Ross.

"We've been doing this for 31 years," he says of the chain of which his two-year-old restaurant is a part. "People know we make good pizza, so they keep coming to us."

That success has led to the anticipated opening of another site, this one in the Waterworks near Aspinwall. Veltri is enthusiastic about that site because it will be bigger and have a liquor license, he says.

Alcoholic beverages or no, Italian Village can draw customers with its lineup.

The Ross store is in the McKnight-Seibert Shopping Center along busy McKnight Road. While it has delivery, its location and available parking make it an easy stop for north-suburban commuters.

It is part of a chain Veltri's father and a business partner started in the Century III Mall, and now has spread throughout this area and as far as Orlando, Fla., and Paducah, Ky.

The younger Veltri says evening trade, particularly on Fridays, always is strong, but the McKnight location creates a strong lunch business, too.

When asked for an item that makes Italian Village notable, Veltri does not delay with his answer: a Sicilian pizza. The reason for the quick reply is easy to see. The square, 16-piece pizza ($14.99, and $2 per topping) comes in one size only -- hefty. The density of the crust is the key to the Sicilian pizza, and its fresh taste makes it a success.

But that is only one of 11 pizza styles that include a white with ricotta and two toppings, a buffalo chicken, and a Carnivore's Delight, which is billed as "meat, meat and more meat." It has pepperoni, ham, sausage, meatballs and bacon, if you need to know.

The Village Supreme comes with five toppings of your choice -- and they don't all have to be meat.

Pizza prices range from $11.99 for a small white to $18.99 for a large steak and cheese or Carnivore's Delight.

But Italian Village is far more than a pizza place. It has a lineup of paninis ($6.99) that range from Mediterranean vegetable to smokehouse turkey.

Calzones start at $7 and go to $8.99 for a build-your-own, while strombolis are $7.99 for the cheese variety to $10.99 for a chicken or steak.

The restaurant offers a complete lineup of hoagies ($4.75 to $5.50 for halfs and $8.25 to $8.99 for wholes). They include the traditional Italian hoagie to a steak and mushroom with grilled onions, pepperoni, green peppers, marinara and provolone.

A garden salad can be added to a meal for $3.99; dinner-type salads are offered for $7.25 and $7.99.

Side orders include wings ($7.99 for 12 to $16.99 for 30) to jalapeno poppers ($3.99) and garlic knots ($2 for five and $4 for 12).

Italian Village offers enough to make any lunch or dinner possible.

Additional Information:

Italian Village Pizza

Location: 4885 McKnight Road, Ross

Hours: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sundays through Thursdays and 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays

Details: 412-548-3250 or website

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