Written by Jennifer the food blogger behind Instagram at @jeyang.foodfunadventures
Are you traveling and looking for a Must Try Detroit Area Restaurant? You won’t want miss out on Luigi’s Trattoria and Pizzeria.
Hi. I’m Jennifer from @jeyang.foodfunadventures. In Michigan, Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued an order to close all bars and restaurants dine-in from March 16th, 2020. With my outgoing personality and not getting to celebrate my birthday in late March during the stay-at-home order, I missed the experience of dining in. With small businesses in the restaurant industry struggling, I decided to take the opportunity to help out. So, over this past year, I have been working with various mom and pop restaurants in Metro Detroit, to promote their product, and increase their carry out sales, during these trying times.
On December 11th, 2020, I visited a family-owned restaurant in Livonia, Michigan called Luigi’s Trattoria Pizzeria located at 31530 Plymouth Rd. Where did the restaurant’s name come from? Filippo Mainella, who is the owner, named it after his father, Luigi. Luigi moved to the United States from Italy when Filippo was a child. Filippo gets to work alongside with his son, Tommaso Mainella, who is the General Manager.
History of Luigi’s
Now, let us go back 20 years. When Luigi’s first opened in October 2000, it began simply as a carry-out pizzeria with a counter service. But as the years moved on, the Mainella family realized a shift in dining, and evolved as a full-service restaurant to serve their hungry customers. With the existing infrastructure and more customers ordering entrées other than pizza, the kitchen was not suited properly to handle the high volume, so they addressed the situation by closing the restaurant for two months at the beginning of January 2020 to remodel, something they had been discussing about since early 2018.
Usually right after the New Years is when the restaurant is less busy, so the family remodeled the kitchen, and spruced up the dining room and bar area. Filippo was ecstatic about the new updated kitchen. He brought in an additional stove and changed the setup in the kitchen, to better handle customer’s orders, and make it easier to continue serving its trademark foods. With the reopening on March 1, 2020 comes a new identity, which better reflects its mission and menu. The restaurant got rid of its old name: Luigi’s Pizza Café and replaced it with the name that it is today: Luigi’s Trattoria and Pizzeria.
While the menu remains the same as before, listed below are some of the dishes I got to try!
Let us start with the appetizers.
Must Try Detroit Area Restaurant: Luigi’s Trattoria and Pizzeria – Featured Food:
Arancini is an Italian snack consisting of a ball of rice; typically, risotto, vegetables, mozzarella coated with panko breadcrumbs, and deep fried with a side of marinara sauce.
One of their most popular Italian entrees is the Chicken Marsala. The chicken breast is coated and briefly sauteed. It is then removed from the pan, which is then used to make a Marsala reduction sauce with cream and mushrooms.
Build Your Own Pasta
Everyone has their own preferences, so Luigi’s offer an option to build your own pasta. For example, I built an angel hair with Norcina sauce topped with Italian Sausages.
You of course cannot forget about their pizza since it originally specialized as a carryout pizzeria. One of their popular pizzas is called Popeye. It is a white pizza topped with spinach, roasted red peppers, fontina, provolone, mozzarella, and herbs.
You do not want to miss out on the desserts from Luigi’s because they offer tiramisu and cannoli with chocolate chips!
Tiramisu is a no-bake Italian dessert combining espresso-dipped ladyfingers, and a creamy sweet mascarpone cream, topped with cocoa powder.
Cannoli consists of a tube-shaped shell of deep-fried pastry dough that are filled with homemade cream sprinkled with chocolate chips.
Luigi’s Trattoria Pizzeria is hands down one of the best Italian restaurants I have been to and a must try Detroit area restaurant. Although I have not tried their entire menu, everything I have eaten was absolutely delicious, and I highly recommend it for anyone in the Metro Detroit area.
The current full menu for the restaurant can be found at http://luigistrattoriapizzeria.com. If you want to place an order at Luigi’s Trattoria Pizzeria, you call in at 734-261-0600 or order online! They also offer delivery up to a 6-mile radius.