We have been looking for the perfect, inexpensive restaurant nearby Pelican Sound, and we finally found it. Nino’s Thick and Thin Pizzeria and Italian Restaurant, located at the Ace Hardware Plaza on Highway 41 North (18911 So. Tamiami Trail, Unit 6 – Fort Myers, FL 33912 – 239.267.6800) easily fits the bill as the closest really good Italian food. We have now gone to this place twice and each time have been amazed at the high quality of the food in a modest setting with really good prices.
We are basically suckers for the veal. Either the veal piccata or veal parmagiano will do. However, looking at the tables around us, a whole lot of people were ordering the Zuppa di Pesce or some variation of this large bowl of seafood over linquine with a red sauce. One thing is for sure at Nino’s you are going to take food home from your dinner. The waitresses are accomplished at quickly boxing up and bagging what easily is another meal for even heavy eaters.
A few tips for those who want to go to Nino’s . First, they have a curious system of reserving a table. No reservations allowed. You go in and tell John (he is the older fellow with the ball cap) how many in your party and whether they are all there. Next you wait for a seat in the hallway and move down the chairs as people are seated. This is reminiscent of the Soup Place on Seinfeld, and John easily plays the role of the soup guy (“No soup for you!). While we were there he kept looking at me and saying “six,” and I kept repeating back “four” until he got it. In any event the line moves quickly as the service is razor fast.
The second tip is that they have a very limited selection of beer and wine. No need to worry about labels or vintage here, since it is really red or white served in a half or whole carafe. While this may disappoint some, the wine, especially the lambrusco, is very good, and the prices very reasonable.
Finally, the pizza, served either thick or thin crust, had a legion of devotees in the line while waiting. The takeout service seemed to be even busier than the restaurant, so add this to the list of very good places to try for a quick pizza fix or a nice and fast meal.