Made-From-Scratch Pasta, Pizza at Verducci a Treat in St. Pete Beach

""“The well-oiled machine is a metaphor often trotted out for restaurants but, truth is, despite all that olive, vegetable and canola, there’s seldom enough oil to get every squeak out. At Verducci Pizzeria & Trattoria you’ll hear, ‘I need those salads’ and ‘Are those my mussels?!’ Servers and bussers are zooming at full tilt while partners Vinny Fortunato and Giovanni Scamardella unperturbedly slide pizzas and hot focaccia and rolls in the windows.”

“There’s an elegance to the group effort. I like to think the owners’ hometown of Monte di Procida, not far from Naples, has restaurants like this: bustling, intimate, without unnecessary razzle-dazzle and just plain good homemade Italian pizzas and pastas. In the year and a half that it has been open (one of many restaurants Fortunato has owned over the years, from Seminole to Largo to downtown St. Petersburg), Verducci has been discovered by snowbirds and winter tourists. It ranks No. 1 in St. Pete Beach on TripAdvisor.”