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The SCENE Magazine

 Gio's Flying Pizza & Pasta • Flavorful Favorites For The Whole Family

Nov 01, 2019 04:42PM ● By John Ennis
Tasty Appetizers, Flying Pizza, an Extensive Selection of Sandwiches & Dishes, Craft Beer on Draft, Delicious Gelato and much more

It is mealtime and while leaving the house is an easy decision, picking a restaurant that satisfies everyone in the family is another story altogether. Yes the struggle to get every family member on the same page or willing to compromise is real.  But occasionally, one finds a venue offering a different favorite flavor for everyone in the family that when suggested, ends the debate leaving everyone satisfied without feeling they had to compromise. 

One of those venues for the Ennis family is Gio’s Flying Pizza & Pasta, which has been a local favorite in the League City/Dickinson area for nearly eleven years. Owners Steve and Diana Gunnett are very hands-on and passionate about their restaurant, their employees and the clientele they serve. 

 “Our mission is to offer our guests authentic Italian dishes made with the freshest ingredients,” said Diana, “and we strive to achieve the highest level of customer service and satisfaction possible.”

Satisfying my spirited 6-year-old son Andy starts with the flying pizza.  He loves watching the disks of dough flying through the air almost as much as he loves eating the pizza itself.

Because of Gio’s open kitchen design, guests of all ages can watch the pizza makers throwing dough up high in the air and catching it with one hand, continuously tossing and spinning the dough until it’s the desired size and thickness. While this performance provides entertainment for many, especially 6-year-old boys, there’s more to this show than meets the eye. Hand tossing pizza dough helps to retain moisture and creates a better crust that is light and fluffy. Recently the servers have started bringing our two kids dough to play with while they wait. And I’m assuming I’m not alone in welcoming anything that can keep hungry and often-inpatient kids occupied, making this a very nice touch. But pizza is serious business at Gio’s as pizza to go is Gio’s most popular menu item, and with gourmet toppings like grilled chicken, meatballs, artichoke hearts, sundried tomatoes, pesto, provolone, feta and ricotta cheeses, as well as all the usual pizza toppings, it’s no wonder Gio’s pizza pies are flying out the door. 

But Gio’s is not just a ‘pizza place,’ and this fact is where my wife is won over as she has become a big fan of the extensive menu that includes Italian specialty dishes, sandwiches and a variety of unique menu items not typically found in the average pizzeria. Every Gio’s dish is prepared from scratch using only the freshest ingredients and the wide range of offerings includes fresh salads, homemade soups, hoagies, paninis, chicken dishes, classic Italian dishes like Fettuccine Alfredo and homemade Lasagna, specialty dishes like the Blue Cheese Crusted Ribeye Steak, Mamma Gio’s Meat Loaf, Rosemary Chicken Kebab, Pork Valdostana and her favorite Luca Brazi (grilled salmon with artichokes, capers & lemon sauce with a side of sautéed vegetables) among others. 

“Nothing on our menu is pre-processed,” Steve explained. “We hand-cut our Ribeyes, our sauce is made fresh daily, we make the dough and roll it ourselves – everything is made with a lot of love and care.”

My wife and I usually split a dish such as the Luca Brazi or Chicken Gio’s (grilled chicken breast topped with provolone cheese, mushrooms and Gio’s special house gravy made with marsala wine) and a panini (options include the meatball panini, bruschetta panini, prosciutto panini, pollo panini and pollo club) served with waffle fries or cup of soup. (I usually push for the waffle fries.)

My 10-year-old daughter enjoys the pizza, and usually shares one with her brother, but the attraction for her comes before and after the meal. She is a big fan of the appetizer menu at Gio’s. She started with the toasted ravioli but has gotten more adventurous in recent visits allowing us to enjoy more original appetizers like the popular Gator Eggs (named after the Dickinson high school mascot) and the Spicy Italian Eggrolls, my favorite. But it is the large selection of desserts (tiramisu, Italian cream cake, New York cheese cake, carrot cake, chocolate mousse cake, chocolate raspberry cake) and especially the six rotating gelato flavors that seem to be her true favorite attraction at Gio’s.

My favorite attraction to Gio’s? It definitely starts with a happy, satisfied family and as my appearance would suggest, I enjoy pizza, pasta, paninis, appetizers and dessert as much as anyone, and I sure partake in all mentioned on every visit. But pushing Gio’s over the top for me is the solid selection of craft beer on draft and a very comfortable setting including six large HDTVs that are always tuned into sports this cord-cutting, cableless sports fan doesn’t have access to at home.  

It should be noted that the updated bar area has plenty of cocktail tables and barstools to accommodate the happy hour (Monday through Friday 3 to 6 p.m.) and game day crowds.
But Gio’s goes beyond what happens inside and offers catering packages as well for large gatherings off-site, such as birthdays, weddings, and business functions, church and school events or holiday parties. Diana is the first point of contact and often serves at the event, ensuring top quality food service. For those wanting to pick up large trays of food for an event and feed a minimum of 10 people without busting the budget, Gio’s is happy to also provide plates, cutlery, serving utensils, beverages, ice and cups. And if you can’t pick it up, Gio’s will even deliver. Gio’s also has the capacity to host large parties of up to 40 people onsite. 

Diana summed it up best, “We always want our guests to feel welcome and enjoy our delicious food with their friends and family in a relaxed atmosphere. We appreciate everyone who has supported us throughout the years and look forward to continued success for many years to come.”

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