Today I ordered a ton of food from here through a local delivery service and boy am I glad I did! I wasn't expecting much, just your typical Italian American fare, with the inevitable disappointment I always have when a place doesn't measure up to my grandparents' treasured Italian spot from my childhood. Not so with IP3! Everything was delicious and perfectly flavored. If I were Neo, it felt like I had hacked into the matrix to the original idea God had intended when he programmed ""Italian American Family Restaurant"" into the code of the Universe.
I ordered a slice of pizza, Spaghetti Pescati, Italian salad, and a Caesar salad. (The plan was to eat it all throughout the day but now it's almost all gone because I couldn't stop snacking on it).
The pizza crust was the perfect texture with a firm crust yet the underlying ""pizza"" part was malleable enough to fold over if you like, and not too floppy. The sauce had some kind of extra flavor to it that I can't figure out, maybe it's the tomatoes? Whatever it is made it stand out as tastier than your usual slice of pizza.
The Spaghetti Pescati was a masterpiece of carefully thought out flavor that you only get with a recipe that's been tested and perfected for generations; fresh plump shrimp and fresh, perfectly cooked clams in their cute little shells. Most restaurants make the mistake of overcooking shellfish but these were cooked to perfection so they were not rubbery or chewy the way clams usually are, but the best part is the sauce! It had that fresh, crisp, clean, slightly tangy and refreshing taste to it that a real good Mediterranean seafood sauce should have, not overbearing, yet full of flavor. This sauce haunted my mind (in a good way) hours later. I've had Bouillobaise and Pescati many times before in my life and this sauce is definitely the best.
The Italian Salad: This is the kind of thing one usually orders out of a guilty feeling of ""needing to eat your vegetables"" and I've never really had an amazing Italian Salad experience until today. Somehow they managed to make even a simple little salad delightful! It was a nice blend of different types of lettuce (not the plain iceberg you usually get in Italian American Restaurants), cute little radishes, cucumbers, tomatoes, and olives, in perfect proportion, and a nice light dressing with herbs. It was simple perfection.
The Caesar Salad: I snarfed this down 10 minutes ago while thinking ""I could drink a pint of this salad dressing..."". This dressing also had such a fine tuned level of flavor that I wonder if it's a family recipe.
I'll close this by saying, I love food. I've had a lot of experience eating out in my life from fine dining to family restaurants (which is what I classify IP3 as) to delis and street stands. I've been a waitress at several restaurants (the first of which was a fine dining Italian restaurant and some of my happiest memories are from working there), and I am also a very good cook with an addiction to cookbooks (I probably own at least 40). So, if you're like me, and you've walked by IP3 a thousand times and never really thought to give this restaurant a chance because you gave up on expecting anything fantastic from Italian American food years ago, this is your lucky day because I'm here to announce: This is the real deal! Take a chance and eat here because you won't be disappointed.
Oh and after wracking my brain wondering what their secret ingredient is, I finally figured it out! LOVE! :D