Thursday, October 7, 2010

Pit-fired perfection

Pitfire Pizza, downtown Los Angeles

Since dating my boyfriend these past three and a half years, I have probably consumed more pizza than ever before. (I swear, pizza is like a food group for him. And most definitely his favorite food.) For that reason, I'll go out on a limb and call myself somewhat of a pizza connoisseur because I truly have had my fair share of slices of all types: thick and thin, loaded and margherita. 

Based on this past experience, I have to say that Pitfire Pizza makes possibly the perfect pizza. Strong statement, I know, but it was that good.

(Prior to Pitfire, it was a little pizza place in Virginia, outside D.C., that held the key to my pizza-loving heart because of it's amazing, cracker-like crust. But that's another story.)

See, before the Sara Bareilles concert last week, the boy and I needed to grab a bite to eat for dinner. I had checked out dozens of restaurants in the area online, looking for something new, different, delicious. While I was tempted by several fancy-sounding Italian restaurants, I opted for Pitfire because it seemed like it would be budget friendly and a sure-fire hit with the boy, who is an even pickier eater than me.

Summer special artichoke pizza

Well, Pitfire delivered on all counts. (Literally, they deliver, but of course that's not what I mean.)

The boy got his typical pepperoni pizza, but Pitfire's version was far from typical. Made with Zoe's slightly spicy natural pepperoni, sweet tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella and torn basil, it was finger-licking good. I got a bite or two before the boy polished it off, no problem.

I decided to try something I had never had before: artichoke pizza. It was on Pitfire's summertime specialties menu, and I was thrilled they still had it even at the end of September. Topped with roasted artichokes, blistered red and yellow cherry tomatoes, wilted spinach and black olives, it was the most flavorful pizza to ever have the joy of entering my mouth. It was salty and delectable-- even more so after drizzling it with some red chili flake-and-herb-infused olive oil on the table-- and I felt a tad guilty leaving even one piece on the plate.

As you can see in the photos, we also had a light salad-- with asiago and "torn" croutons-- to get our greens. I washed it all down with a glass of Pomelo Sauvignon Blanc. Slightly sweet, with notes of fig, apple and grapefruit, I think it was the perfect pairing.

Now, as tasty as the toppings and sauce were, Pitfire's pizza wouldn't be as magnificent as it is if not for the crust. Pitfire stays true to its name. The pies are cooked in a wood fired oven, resulting in a rustic, crispy, perfectly singed crust. And the bubbles! Oh, the bubbles were my favorite part. You know how sometimes there are bubbles in your pizza crust? Well, these bubbles weren't full of air... just more doughy, delicious bread! Oh goodness. Charred and chewy pizza. What could be better?

I was kind of hoping to try Pitfire's smothered cookie-- a warm cookie topped with organic soft serve, hazelnuts and your choice of sauce (I would have gone for the house made caramel sauce with Maldon salt)-- but the boy and I were just too stuffed (thank goodness for my flowy dress!) and it was not meant to be. Next time, I'll save room!

(Totally trying the handmade chicken meatballs with grilled bread next time. Totally.)

Oh, how I hope there will be a next time. I'd seriously drive an hour just for that crust.

Pitfire, could you make a special delivery to Simi? Please and thank you.

So, now I need to know: Have you had any great pizza lately? Or tried a new restaurant? I'd love to hear!



Dionne said...

OK stop right there. That pizza looks like divinity. Wow.

And don't even get me started on that cookie our described! Pity you were too full to indulge. :(

Phoenix said...

There used to be a Pit-Fire Pizza within walking distance of my home. I practically lived there. I got SO spoiled - such great food!

{lovely little things} said...

I agree with your boyfriend - pizza should be its own food group!

Shoshanah said...

Have you ever been to Mozza? It's my parents favorite place to get pizza in L.A. If I remember correctly it's run by Nancy Silverton (who started La Brea Bakery) and Mario Batali (from the Food Network). If you've never tried it, I'm sure you guys would love it!

alli/hooray said...

Ok, this post REALLY makes me want some pizza for dinner.

cb said...

yum, love pizza! the best pizza i have ever had was in brooklyn, from a brick oven! oh i can taste it now even though it was 4 years ago! one day i will go back!