Photo by Ron Sundquist – Editor Valerie Shelton, reporter Lauren Mueller, publisher Donna Melchor and office manager Caitie Reeg.
By Valerie Shelton, Editor
There is no dining experience more romantic than sharing a meal at an authentic Italian restaurant, and Luna Pizzeria and Italian Restaurant, located in the heart of Old Town Clovis offers the perfect dim-lighted atmosphere and delicious Italian cuisine for your next date night.
While dinner is the most popular meal at Luna—and you’ll need to make a reservation as this cute little family joint is often packed—Luna also has a lunch menu, which up until last week I’d never tried. Most of the dishes are similar to those on the larger dinner menu, with portion sizes being smaller on most items, the exception being the gigantic calzone, which our publisher Donna Melchor ordered.
I ordered one of the lunch specials of fettuccini Alfredo, which comes with your choice of soup or salad—I opted for the salad. Ron Sundquist took my lead and also ordered the fettuccini Alfredo and raved about it.
Our reporter Lauren Mueller got the tortellini with red sauce and meatballs, which she said is one of her favorites—she has been to Luna many times and has enjoyed everything she’s tried.
Our graphic designer Billy Xiong had the most interesting order—an Antonio Special, which is a hot sandwich with salami, melted cheese, red sauce, lettuce and tomato on a 10-inch white roll. Luna is known for their great pizza, but I had no idea before our lunch that they had sandwiches as well. Billy liked his sandwich and now I’m tempted to go back to Luna for lunch to order one of their sandwiches—there is also a meatball sandwich, steak sandwich, sausage with cheese, pepperoni with cheese, the Umberto special which has Canadian bacon, and an eggplant sandwich.
Everyone else in our party got the soup and salad combo for lunch. It was a rainy Friday so a hot bowl of Minestrone soup hit the spot.
While the food is good, the biggest draw of Luna is its atmosphere—the low lighting, the Italian artwork on the walls featuring designs of the Roman Colosseum and the leaning Tower of Pisa, and the smell of fresh baked Italian bread.
Luna also has a long history in the City of Clovis and is a local favorite.
Luna Pizzeria and Italian Restaurant has been around since 1969 and is locally owned and operated by the Liberta family. Originally from Italy, Franco and Carmela Liberta moved to Clovis from New York because the health of their young children forced them to relocate. The family had a history of running delis and pizzerias, so the Liberta’s decided to open their own Italian restaurant. At first, they received skepticism from those in the area who thought the restaurant wouldn’t make it in Clovis, but the Liberta family proved those skeptics wrong. Throughout the years, the Liberta’s three children would come to work at the restaurant and eventually, the family was able to expand the restaurant to include a second dining area and banquet room.
While a lot has changed since 1969, Luna has remained a staple in the community. To this day it is still owned by the Liberta family, with Carmela and her sons David and Bert in charge.