We started our Pennsylvania road trip through Adamstown, Kutztown, and Bethlehem with a stop for some antiquing in the “Antique Capital of the USA”. On the way there, we noticed a little Italian restaurant called Procopio’s on the side of the road. Justin and I were both hungry but just not digging diner food. It was mid-afternoon when we pulled up. My first impression was that I was not going to trust this Pennsylvania pizzeria with actual pizza and that I was getting a sub. We walked in and took a look at the menu. I wanted to get off to a somewhat healthy start, so I elected to go for the roasted veggie sub. While Justin perused the menu, I eyed an enormous freezer of beers on the side wall. They had a great selection, but neither of us were in the mood. He then settled on the sausage parm hero. We took a seat.
There were mostly families. It was apparent they had just come from a Little League game. This was a neighborhood joint and probably the only Italian restaurant anywhere near. Now, before you ask, “Is he going to review a restaurant based on a veggie sub?”, I call your attention to other earlier experiences, where my longing for something simple was butchered into oblivion. You’re damn right I can rate a restaurant only on that.
The subs hit the table and I was pleasantly shocked by their enormity. Mine was $7.45, while Justin’s rang it at 50 cents more. These prices for a whole sub. Those numbers would not have gotten you a half back in Jersey. I took one bite, and I was impressed. For something as a simple as this, it was well-constructed. The roll was sturdy and there was absolutely no water drippage anywhere (further shame on you, Elsie’s). There were so many veggies packed into that sub that I actually felt healthy: broccoli, onions, mushrooms, roasted red peppers, spinach, and olives. But those healthy thoughts were dashed by the cheesesteak-like amount of white American cheese that was melted into the bread. Meanwhile, Justin loved his sausage sub and was relegated to eating his second half with a knife and fork, ditching the bread to make room. We also shared a side of fries. All the above-mentioned food came out blistering hot—so hot that I had to sit and wait a few minutes before diving in. This was a mark of efficiency considering it seemed like we only waited five minutes for the food.
Pizzerias can be horror shows west of New York and New Jersey, but Procopio’s nailed it. Granted, we did not actually order pizza but if their sandwich-making is any indication, I may trust them with a slice or two on our next visit. All things considered (price, quality, quantity), I am giving them a solid 3.5 out of 5 stars, which is far from average when it comes to a place like this. I would have no problem recommending this as a must-visit if you are hungry and are in need of a lightning-quick lunch.
Procopio’s is located on 2525 North Reading Road in Denver, PA.
Click here for more in this series as the days go by.