By Lisa Petrillo

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Let’s just start with the obvious: you will not go hungry at Crust.

The charming Italian restaurant is located in the rapidly trending Miami River area.

Husband and wife Klime and Anita Kovaceski opened their popular eatery back in 2015.

“Mainly our dishes are outrageously big, so sharing is encouraged. We do takeout, so we don’t want to make a big one and small one, so everything is big,” said Klime.

Chef Klime hails from Macedonia, but he spent years in Italy and found a passion for Italian cuisine.

While he’s in the back preparing his mouth watering dishes, lovely Anita, also of Macedonian heritage but raised in Australia, runs the front of the house.

Word is loyal customers come back for the food and her hospitality.

“I’m so appreciative of anyone that walks through my doors. There are thousands of restaurants here in Miami and when people take time off come to this part of the city most of them get lost first time,” Anita said. “So it’s very important for me to make them feel welcome.”

The space is a former 1950’s private home. It’s a relaxed setting with European tiles and vintage pictures of Miami. But, it’s the food that keeps packing them in.

“The menu is designed as basic classic Italian,” Klime explained. “Then I listen to my clientele and we have a chicken parmesan, and some are vegetarian and so we have eggplant parmesan. We do take requests.”

CBS4’s Lisa Petrillo began with Klime’s shrimp cakes, a first for her. They were served with portobello mushrooms, basil aioli and tomato sauce.

“I mentioned I’ve never seen a shrimp cake, only a crab cake,” said Petrillo, after tasting.  “And I’m a new fan because there’s a crunch and sweetness to the shrimp. Then the portobello gives it smoothness and the marinara brings it home.”

Next, Petrillo tried the signature Crust pizza, which is served whole.

Klime and his team make many types.

Petrillo had a béchamel cheese base with prosciutto, blue cheese and figs.

“Shut the front door! This pizza is unbelievable. It’s the classic Crust pizza: béchamel cheese, fig. It’s a party in a pizza and it also feels very elegant hearty and just a melt in your mouth dish right here,” Petrillo said.

And finally, she was served the mother lode – Chicken Parmesan on a bed of homemade pasta.

“What’s unique about this chicken parm is that chef uses the tenderloins of the chicken. That’s the moist tender part of the meat,” Petrillo said. “I don’t know how he makes this sauce, but it’s heaven on a plate. A huge plate!”

Crust is open six days week, Tuesday through Sunday, beginning at 5 p.m. for dinner only.

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