Today we stopped dropped in for dinner at Nini’s pizza and Italian restaurant on Penman rd in Jacksonville beach. Nini’s is the definition of a true hole in the wall restaurant. The restaurant is a tiny space with only 5 tables and one waitress who handles all the tables and also handles take out. Nini’s is a family owned restaurant that offers all of your Italian favorites plus a few items that you don’t normally see every day. Since the restaurant is so small it’s very possible you’ll have to wait for a table if you come at peak times. We waited 5 minutes and we didn’t see anyone else have to wait long. As more people hear about Nini’s we suspect there will be a wait to eat in the restaurant. Keep this in mind when planning a trip out to Nini’s. We heard they were rapidly picking up a following of rabid fans so we had to go see what they’re all about. We’re glad we did.
Telephone: (904) 247-0470
Address: 1269 Penman Road Jacksonville Beach, Florida 32250
Food: All entrees come with a side salad so we started off with the salad. It was pretty small even as side salads go. It was basic. Since we didn’t come here to talk about salads, on we move to the main attractions. The first item we dug into was the lasagna. It was good. Maybe a little too strong of a tomato flavor for my taste but that’s probably just personal preference. I’d still give it a B+. It was solid lasagna. Plus the portion size was very generous. It was double the size of some lasagnas I’ve been served in other Italian restaurants. Next up was the pizza. We ordered our pizza with pepperoni, onions, and peppers. I know….it’s not a typical arrangement of toppings but I let my 13 year old choose the toppings on this one. This pizza was exactly what I expect a good Italian restaurant to crank out, quality. It was far less greasy than pizza you’d get from one of the chains. The crust was good. The cheese was high quality. I’m confident if you drop in at Nini’s and order a pizza you’ll enjoy it. Heck, no need to even leave your couch. They deliver to you if you live in Atlantic Beach, Neptune Beach, Jacksonville Beach, or South Jacksonville Beach. To us the stars of the show at Nini’s are the rolls. No, I’m not talking about big hunks of bread with a little parmesan on top. These are big rolls of dough filled with two kinds of cheese and a variety of toppings. It’s sort of a cross between a stromboli and a calzone. If a Stromboli had tastier bread than usual, the bread was only on the outside and you crossed it with a calzone this might be it. We tried the Spinach roll ($7.95) which had chopped spinach blend, ricotta, mozzarella, and parmesan rolled up in the middle of delicious dough. The roll was awesome! It was easily the best thing we tried and everything else we tried was good. The dough had just the right amount of crispness to it. The cheeses tasted fresh and rich. The flavors blended nicely together. I’d come back to Nini’s just to try the other rolls. One in particular that sounds awesome is the Lincoln Tunnel roll which comes with chicken strips, mozzarella, cheddar, and ranch dressing. All dinners come with garlic knots so we got a chance to try these also. They were great. They were super garlicky! They maybe had a tad more garlic than I usually like but they were none the less enjoyable. Everyone who dines here raves about the garlic knots and we can see why.
Service: The service was good. Considering there was one waitress who served all 5 tables and managed the steady stream of pickup orders she did a remarkably good job. They use huge drink glasses so there’s less refilling necessary. We didn’t wait long for our food. Our waitress was on top of everything.
- Rich delicious rolls
- Some of the best pizza in Jax beach
- Good portion size
- Small dining area means there may be a wait