Taste of Italy
Last weekend, we made the short trip up to Lexington to visit my cousin. He is a freshman at Washington & Lee and playing on the soccer team, so we are trying to get to as many of his games as we can. There isn't a lot going on in Lexington, but there are a number of little restaurants scattered around town and we tried an Italian place after his game last Saturday. Meatball Parmigiana Sub
If it isn't obvious by their sign, Salerno is a small, family owned restaurant in downtown Lexington. The atmosphere is very casual - much more of a local pizza pub/sandwich shop than a fancy Italian restaurant. There is a TV in one corner of the room and sports memorabilia all over the walls. Actually, it seems like they are trying to put up t-shirts from as many universities as possible as a sort of collection. You place your order at the counter, seat yourself, and the food is served to your table.
The menu is full of Italian style food. They have traditional Italian entrees (lasagna, ravioli, pasta, etc.) as well as pizza, sandwiches, calzones, & salads. Most items are priced between $7-$15 and the portions are more than generous. I decided to order the Meatball Parmigiana sub, which was 9 inch. long. The sub is filled with homemade meatballs and covered in melted mozzarella cheese and marinara sauce. The meatballs and sauce had good flavor from the Italian spices, but I would have liked it more if the bread was more toasted. I was also very impressed with the pizzas and calzones I saw other people ordering. Both were HUGE and loaded with toppings and people weren't leaving many leftovers on their tables.
In terms of Italian restaurants in Lexington, I don't know if Salerno has a ton of competition. It's obvious that many of their regular customers are students at W&L and VMI and they do a good job of offering various specials for really good deals. They also serve a lunch buffet that I would assume is very good. In all, I'm glad we were able to find a good local Italian place in a space where we wouldn't expect it.
Salerno Family Restaurant
115 South Jefferson Street, Lexington, VA 24450