All of a sudden, I’m getting more work. I spent the day in rural Calhoun County again today at a couple different job sites. When lunch rolled around, we were in Homer. The task we were working on was taking longer than we thought and it started to push into our lunch break. Still, we asked around to see where in town we should go. Everyone we asked gave us the same answer. The unfortunate part was they all said while it was a fabulous restaurant, service was slow and we were really crunched for time.
Cascarelli’s Pizza is on the corner of Main and Sophia Streets in downtown Homer. We called in our order so it would be ready when we got there. The down side is none of us had seen a menu, so I had no idea it was a pizza joint when we left the job site. The good thing is, it’s more than a pizza joint. It’s a full service bar with a pretty outstanding menu.
The interior is set up with two rooms. The kitchen is in the front actually in the window. It’s a throwback to the old fashioned nature of the place. You can watch them toss pizza dough as you’re walking around downtown. The bar is right next to the kitchen and there are a couple tables and a booth.
The other room is much more open and set up like a typical pub dining room. The place is lit with antique light fixtures. They all have that sort of stained glass cover. They don’t give off a ton of light which adds to the atmosphere.
When we walked in, we found a server and told her we were the ones who called in our order. She pointed to a table in the back corner where our food was on the table waiting for us. One of the lady’s I was with stopped at the bar and asked for three ice waters as me and my other colleague went to dig in.
Since I had no idea what was on the menu, I asked for a plain cheeseburger. In hindsight, I really wish I could have seen the menu. Not because the cheeseburger was bad, but because they have so many other sandwich and burger combination’s that look delicious. The burger I ordered was 1/2 of fresh ground, hand pattied meat with a slice of cheddar cheese served on a Artisan roll. It was not at all what I was expecting when I sat down. It was delicious. The burger was incredibly juicy and the bread was good enough to eat on its own. Both of the ladies I was with looked at my burger and said they wish they would have known. It was that good. Instead of fries, the sandwich came with home made pasta salad. It was good, but not really my thing. There was a lot of extra veggies mixed in with the pasta. I know there were olives and spinach. I couldn’t really pick anything else out. We were sitting in a dark corner so it was hard to make out details. It was good, but not something I’d order on my own, but it’s mostly because I’d rather have something deep fried.
Both of the ladies I was with ordered the Smoked Turkey Salad. One of them ordered a half, the other ordered a whole. The one who ordered the whole could have got by with the half. The size of the salad is ridiculously big. The extra large plate was layered with fresh greens, turkey that has been grilled and smoked, red onions, green olives, tomatoes, Parmesan and Asiago cheeses, and fresh roasted peanuts. I believe both went with a raspberry vinaigrette. Both were really impressed with the turkey. It was actual slices of turkey breast and not deli sliced turkey like they were expecting. The peanuts caught the lady who ordered the whole salad a little off guard. She’s not allergic, but she didn’t expect them to be there. Again, didn’t get a chance to look at the menu before ordering. They both went off a recommendation from a local who raved about the salad.
By calling ahead, we were able to eat in less than fifteen minutes which is a good thing since we only had about twenty. The bill was a little under $30 because we all had water to drink.
Cascarelli’s came very highly recommended. Every single person we asked in Homer pointed us to the same place. The menu really caught my attention and I’d really like to try a lot more, but it looks like you can only order a pizza on weekends. If they served the full menu, I’d say it would be worth the trip. Hell, it still could be. I didn’t have the pizza, but I’ve read a lot of other reviews and gotten a lot of word-of-mouth feedback on the place. If you’re in the area for lunch or want to plan a weeknight trip, you have to check this place out. They have a completely unexpected menu and they do it very well.