HOME > Chowhound > San Francisco Bay Area >
Brewing beer, curing meat, or making cheese? Get great advice

Pizzaiolo for dinner tonight

fnut Nov 16, 2006 04:58 AM

Just came in from a nice meal there. Food was good, not awe inspiring but solid and seasoned. Scallops were probably the best thing ordered but I love Scallops. Pizza was just ok, I like Picco's better. Braised pork was melt in your mouth, polenta with it was so-so. Chicory salad was well done. Desserts alas all came from somewhere else, bummer. If you can go so far as to have a place, at least make your own desserts if you are charging what they are charging. Mind you, they don't hide the fact that the desserts are from elsewhere, but I really expected house-made from such an establishment. Delfina manages to do it, A-16 pulls it off, even Zax tavern down the road a piece manages to keep it all in their kitchen. On the whole, if that was the worst problem we had with the meal, then it was still a good meal. The wine was excellent as always...

  1. Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. j
    jmarek Nov 16, 2006 07:40 PM

    Desserts are (at least usually) from Bakesale Betty just a few doors down. It is practically in-house physically, and they make very, very good stuff.

    5 Replies
    1. re: jmarek
      JasmineG Nov 16, 2006 07:47 PM

      Only one of them is -- they usually have one from Bakesale Betty's, one from another bakery, and then an affogato, or something similar. I agree that the lack of a pastry chef is a huge downer for Pizzaiolo; I like Bakesale Betty's a lot, but I can go there on my own, and I wish Pizzaiolo had more interesting desserts.

      1. re: JasmineG
        fnut Nov 17, 2006 03:37 AM

        For all of the acclaim I am just amazed they do not have someone making their desserts. I find it very hard to believe. I have worked in smaller places that cranked out more desserts than they offer and it is just part of the job... just my opinion...

        1. re: fnut
          Robert Lauriston Nov 17, 2006 05:01 PM

          The desserts I've had at Pizzaiolo have been great. With neighbors and friends like Bakesale Betty and Ici, why should they hire a pastry chef?

          1. re: Robert Lauriston
            JasmineG Nov 17, 2006 05:17 PM

            They've had the exact same desserts on the menu for at least the last month and a half, maybe even last two months. For a place that changes their regular menu every night, I think that's just so boring and contrary to the rest of the restaurant. And I'm sure the Bakesale Betty date pudding is great, but that's the only thing they have from them right now, and to me, ice cream isn't really the dessert I look for when I'm out to dinner. This summer when they often had stone fruit in the wood oven, it was different, but now the desserts are just not interesting. I think they're missing out on business by not having a pastry chef -- I know that when I'm there and I want dessert, I often just go a few blocks away to A Cote, or even next door to Dona Tomas.

          2. re: fnut
            sugarbuzz Nov 17, 2006 05:15 PM

            The reason they don't is probably because there is just no room to handle a pastry chef. I've worked in the kitchen(if you want to call it that)for a tasting I was doing for the owner. Really the only space I could use was by the open hearth. The place in the back is all storage & dishwashing area.
            It makes more sense for them to buy out.

      2. Morton the Mousse Nov 17, 2006 06:10 PM

        They had an excellent pastry chef for the first year. AFter a falling out, they decided to not replace her. It's too bad, she mad a damn fine panna cotta. Kitchen space was definitely a concern.
        They do still make amazing seasonal fruit from the wood fire oven. Last Fall, they did great things with caramel apples and walnut stuffed pears. I haven't seen it on the menu yet, but hope to soon.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Morton the Mousse
          JasmineG Nov 17, 2006 06:38 PM

          I've been waiting and waiting for apples and pears on the dessert menu, and still nothing. Those nectarines from the wood oven were so great this summer.

        2. JasmineG Jan 7, 2007 06:14 PM

          Praise the Lord, Pizzaiolo has a new pastry chef, and she's a good one! I was there last night, and the dessert menu finally looked interesting and exciting (and by the number of profiteroles that I saw being brought to other tables, the rest of the restaurant thought so too). I didn't have the profiteroles, but both tables next to me did, and they loved them -- I had the apple fritters, with a brown sugar molasses gelato (presumably made in house, because the menu didn't say that the ice creams were from Ici, as it has in the past), and the dessert was fantastic, perfectly fried, very light, and the gelato was great. My waitress said that the pastry chef used to be the pastry chef at Quince. I'm so glad that I can finish my meal happily at Pizzaiolo now.

          1 Reply
          1. re: JasmineG
            Doodleboomer Jan 18, 2007 07:42 AM

            You're right, they did get a new pastry chef. I heard she was out sick for a few days which is why the got Bakesale Betty to cover. She makes excellent Pot de Creme, crostadas, and other stuff. her gelatos are heavenly, from what i have had and blows away most other ice cream/gelatos I have had

          Show Hidden Posts