If you have been touched by the amazing quality and atmosphere that Anticos Pizza has brought to the Atlanta area, you are in for a treat! Anticos founder Giovanni has opened up another amazing spot located right beside Anticos named Gios Chicken Amafitano bringing authentic Naples chicken and pasta to the Atlanta area. Giovanni was in Harlem, NY with Frankie - owner of the famous Rao's Italian restaurant (the restaurant that's almost impossible to reserve a table unless you happen to know someone who owns one or be part of a family who owns one) - and tried the Sorrento Lemon Chicken famous at Rao's. This reminded him of the same taste and flavor which he had experienced in Italy and gave him the idea of bringing that same taste to Atlanta.
Currently Gios is the only restaurant in Atlanta offering many authentic Italian dishes from Naples including the sorrento lemon chicken and the chicken amalfitano. All dishes at Gios are inspired from Naples and the Amalfi Coast and packs the same ingredients used in their already loved pizza at Anticos Pizza. Gios Chicken Amalfitano is named after its signature dish the Chicken Amalfitano made from roasted green olives, castelvetrano olives, navy sweet onions and bread crumbs. Between this dish and the Sorrento Lemon Chicken, it will definitely be worth your while to keep coming back.
A leading factor in the amazing taste of their chicken is the base ingredient; the chicken itself. Currently Gios is the only restaurant serving Bell and Evans chicken in Atlanta. This is chicken made from Pennsylvania dutch farms that is harmone and antibiotic free their whole lives. That means as an egg or as a chicken they are clean period. They are fed a vegetarian diet. Another great factor to add in is that the chicken is air chilled so there is no retained water or added water and chemicals to keep it preserved. This allows the chicken to retain its flavor and fat content. Currently they have made an agreement with Gios to be a part of this new movement and has become the supplier of the chicken used in their amazing dishes.
Although named after its amazing chicken, Gio's has an equally amazing choice of fresh hand made gragnano pasta that is bronze dye cut and made from the best flour. When pasta is bronze dye cut it leaves a rough surface on the pasta allowing it to retain sauce better. Combining an amazing pasta with the already loved imported Italian ingredients and fresh made sauces, its definitely an item you do not want to leave without trying.
Anticos pizza has opened up a new culture in itself in the Atlanta area. Of any pizzaria, the moment you walk in you feel that you are walking into something new and exciting. The regulars will be walking around the kitchen with their own wine bottles while chatting with friends either standing or sitting while they eat. The best way i can describe it is a house party - everyone seems happy to enjoy each others company and great food. This atmosphere was birthed in Italy and successfully brought to Atlanta by Giovanni. I personally believe that Gios will be another amazing addition to the Atlanta area and will bring another culture in itself combining amazing food and an open kitchen atmosphere. While your enjoying your chicken and/or pasta, pizza orders can also be made and brought over.
If you are a couple and a group of friends, cost comes into mind when you think of these type of dishes. Its recommended if you are a couple to purchase a chicken and a pasta. This will run you a tad over $30.00 which is more then reasonable. Many local restaurants will give half the portion for the same or more in cost. Take it from me, initially you will wonder about the cost until you get your entree and realize its actually an amazing deal! Another amazing factor about Gios as well as Anticos is that tipping is not needed or asked for so your eating a 5 star dish without all of the expenses of the atmosphere, waiters and staff that hike up the costs and the portions are going to be a lot more hearty in comparison to other high end restaurants. If you are a family of 4 or more, it is recommended that you order a family portion of chicken or pasta which can cost up to $40.00 but feeds 4-5 people.
If you have a party of 8 or more and would rather not fight the crowd, you can call ahead and reserve the Maradona table. For those who were a part of the initial launch of Anticos pizza, this table brings back memories. It was the only table in the kitchen prior to the renovation and has had a lot of history since then. It was taken out and used in Giovanni's outdoor dining area at his home. Many big names has sat and ate at that table such as Chris Rock, Kiss, Owen Wilson and many others. The table can seat 8-10.
To sum it up, Gio and Anticos are both great places to start an evening or end an evening with. The high energy - friendly culture will always invite a sense to linger and relax a bit after or before having an amazing pizza or dish. If you are like me and are usually in a rush, I would recommend ordering a pizza at Anticos and having it brought over to Gios to pair with a pasta in a slightly less crowded atmosphere. Gio's Chicken Amalfitano is less then a month old but will hit the Atlanta area fast. Now is the best time to try it out before the lines match up with the already famous Anticos pizza.