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Mozza Pizzeria - Perceptor's Report

after reading all the chowhound reports on Mozza, I finally had the chance to check it out for myself. We got seats at the counter, just arm's length from owner nancy silverton. She was there to make pizzas that night. After reading the wide spectrum of reviews on chowhound, I wonder where i would fall into. Now that i have experienced Mozza, I classified myself under the "YES I LIKE" category. We had a fantastic meal there. The food was great and service was friendly. I didn't wanna get too philosophical about the pizza dough. All i know is my taste buds were incredible happy when biting into the 3 different pizzas that we got and thats the most important measuring stick....

Click link for photo coverage - http://www.kodakgallery.com/I.jsp?c=9...

Pizzeria Mozza
641 N Highland Ave (Cross Street: Melrose Avenue
)Los Angeles, CA 90038
(323) 297-0101

- Perceptor

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  1. molto bene! can't tell you how helpful these reports are.

    those fried squash blossoms look INCREDIBLE, as do the rest of the pics.

    1. excellent review -- thank you for the pictures!!!

      1. I have been on the fence about whether I should brave the hassle of getting to and into Mozza. Those pictures made up my mind - when I get back to LA after the holidays, I'm so there.

        1. oh yum, your pics looks SO good, reminds me that I need to get myself back there! I loved their chicken liver, capers, parsley and guanciale crostini so much that I might make the trip just to get it. That, and the affogato. And maybe I'll try their squash blossom. And heck, I think I'll have to try that clam pizza too now... :P

          1 Reply
          1. re: maybelle

            That chicken liver bruschetta was one of the best things I've eaten all year!

          2. While your pictures look wonderful, as does the food in person, there are differing opinions on the taste issues.
            I went last Thursday and also had the squash blossom thingy, chicken liver and brussels sprouts apps. All 3 very disappointing, especially the squash blossom. Fried blossom framework had no taste and just a lump of gooey cheese inside -good cheese, but still just cheese. B/Spts much better at AOC, as is the chicken liver appy.
            Had the fennel pizza as well as the goat cheese/carmelized onion pizza - good fennel sausage, yet no other taste on top. On the goat cheese one, the flavors did not meld together whatsoever. And as to that crust - Carr's Water cracker in taste - blech! Properly cooked yet dreadful taste.
            The butterscotch dessert was fine enough yet hardly comparable to the one at Jar, and the fig thing was awful as the crust tasted like it was made with day old shortbread cookies and, as dull as the crust taste was, it still overpowered the lack of a fig taste. Who created that idea needs to start over. Wish the meyer lemon topping was a separate dessert instead of with the fig item, but the two did not go together whatsoever.
            Wines nice enough, coffee awful.
            Over all, maybe a C+ for food on PoetKitty's scale. Decor and feel - B+. Doubt I would return.

            1. Pictures look wonderful, thank you for sharing. I have a rambunctious one-year old, and have been wanting to go to Mozza since it opened, but we'd need to bring him. It looks like you went later in the evening so you may not be able to answer: is the pizzeria suitable for children? We'd go between 5 and 6 PM.

              5 Replies
              1. re: HungryInHancock

                We went at 5pm and there was a couple with a very small child at the table next to us... no problems at all. Please keep in mind that the tables are VERY close together. If your child is loud or rambunctious it could really disrupt other diners.

                1. re: HungryInHancock

                  I've been at lunch and I saw plenty of toddlers and even strollers being wheeled in.

                  1. re: HungryInHancock

                    I think if you can get a table it's fine, the place is ultra casual.

                    But the bar - well, they only have stools, so I wouldn't trust a 1 year old to stay on.

                    1. re: notmartha

                      A bar seat is typically not legal for those under 21 anyway.

                      1. re: bbirch

                        Mozza also has a *pizza bar* which is a separate seating space from their wine bar. I presume that those still lucky enough to be under 21 years of age :-) can sit at the pizza bar's stools, issues of balance and gravity notwithstanding...

                  2. Fantastic photos. I'm definitely going back soon...

                    1. Nice pictures! We ate there on the 26th and I thought it was quite good. Fried squash blossoms were light, crunchy and very flavorful. Sausage pizza... I loved the crust, but the toppings weren't my thing. Five 1" meatballs spread over the pizza means you get about 1 meatball per slice, which I find strange since you either eat most of your slice w/o sausage or nibble bites off the sausage to spread out the flavor. I'm assuming I just picked the wrong pizza for my tastes. Crispy duck was a very good confit, although not the best rendition I've had. Butterscotch budino's topping was delicious, but w/o that, I think the pudding part (which is most of the dessert) would have been a bit boring. Tried to stop by Scoops afterward, but it was closed.

                      1. Aha! From your pictures, it doesn't seem that the Lardo Pizza is on the menu. I went to Mozza a couple of weeks ago, and noticed they didn't have Lardo on the menu then. But when I reported that here, many people said that it is indeed on the menu, and that I probably just missed it. But from your pictures, it seems that it isn't on the menu. Am I blind, or is the Lardo really not on the menu?

                        Also, I enjoyed Mozza very much and I plan on going back again. Your pictures are wonderful.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: martymitz

                          Lardo was also missing on the day I went, and they say it depends on availability, because we did ask for it.

                        2. Welcome back Preceptor - I've missed your great reports. Thanks for the latest on Mozza...I've heard mixed reviews but your pictures speak much louder. I can't wait until my January ressie.

                          1. Great report and wonderful pictures! Those stuffed squash blossoms look incredible. All the pizza's too.

                            1. I really dug Mozza when I ate there, one afternoon at the counter by myself. Your pictures are great. You should have taken one of the bill as well.

                              Wide Eyed Raven

                              1. LOL. I actually took a picture of the bill when I was there, it's hard to see, but it's funny: http://www.flickr.com/photos/bassbiz/...

                                1. i think it's cool how you took pictures of the menu. has anyone tried their salads? my only source of information about mozza is this board, and i wouldn't have known mozza even had salads since nobody has written about them (i think)... :)

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: bijoux16

                                    Nancy's Chopped Salad has gotten several positive reviews here, with only one unimpressed review, as I recall...

                                  2. Had the arugala salad - it was divine. Nice big portion of bright green leaves with a simple vinagrette that was applied with a light hand. Perfect.

                                    1. You totally lucked out on the pizza that night. We just went two days ago and the pizzz was so so burnt. SO was scraping it off (I was a little shocked at that), but then even I found myself cracking into and ripping off the hard, black part. Otherwise the dough is truly amazing. And I loved the goat cheese pizza with leeks, bacon and garlic, and the fennel sausage one is good too. Our margherita, however, was burnt in every way, even the cheese was too cooked. Shame.

                                      Oh, and by the way, we got there about 5:30, got the last two seats at the bar, but they were right in front of the door and it was chilly. it was half and half full at that point; most of the large tables were empty, but the hostesses could've been waiting for reservations. Really, the key to eating here without the ressie is to just go for a late lunch or an early dinner, and just sit at the bar. I also want to say that these are some of the nicest, no attitude hostesses I've seen in LA. Down to earth, honest, approachable. They let these three women who came in after us take a table as long as they promised to be done by 7pm. They were totally game for that, and I sincerely hope they left the table ina timely fashion because that was nice of the hostess. So many times, these people in the front just have no clue how to seat people, and they're probably told to not seat people, even if they can. anyway, sorry for that staffing rant, but you did take GREAT PHOTOS as usual.

                                      1. totally agree--- we had nearly the same meal...below is my rave of a post:

                                        http://www.chowhound.com/topics/351946

                                        I think some people overthink their experience at Mozza (over analyzing the crust, suace, prices) but, as you say, it comes down to one thing - your tastebuds - and mine were very very pleased.

                                        1. Nice report, you tried more than I did, but I had a solid meal of just pizza. Even at 2pm today, there was a 15-20 minute wait for seats at the bar. The bartender was friendly and efficient.

                                          3 people = 3 pizzas = lotsa sharing
                                          - egg, guanciale, radicchio and bagna cauda (described as an anchovy spread?)
                                          - prosciutto, rucola and mozzarella
                                          - burrata, squash blossom and tomato

                                          I loved the first 2, especially the nice runny egg yolk on the egg pizza and the prosciutto on the other one. I would definitely order these again. I read that the restaurant doesn't slice the egg pizza for you in order to preserve the whole yolk in the middle for presentation, and it came un-sliced today, too. Looks nice, but it's a pain to cut with the regular knife. A more heavy-duty serrated knife or cheap pizza slicer would be a huge help.

                                          I think as others have mentioned, the burrata comes cold on the burrata pizza, and that hurts the pizza by cooling down the rest of it. Cold soggy is not nearly as good as hot soggy!

                                          As for the philosophical debate on whether Mozza pizza = real pizza, I think this is as "pizza" as any other pizza I've had. There are so many variables that we should just forget the labeling and enjoy the food.

                                          Overall: I enjoyed the food and will be back to try the rest of the menu.

                                          1. Just came back from dinner:

                                            Excellent arancini
                                            So-so fried squash blossoms (good cheese filling, too much oil flavor, not enough squash blossom flavor)
                                            Decent clam pizza, although too heavy handed with the chili flake
                                            Weak sausage pizza: I agree that the ingedients don't work together
                                            (Both pizzas had a doughy bottom and areas of black char around the rim. To me, it was a sign of an oven floor that wasn't hot enough to cook. We were there at 5:30pm)

                                            EXCELLENT butterscotch budino. COMPLETELY REDEEMED THE REST OF THE DINNER!

                                            Just one person's opinion!

                                            1. Was here again on 30 Dec right when it opened. First, let me say something about the foodies/ eager beavers that line up outside the place. We got there early, sat on the bench and had a nice talk between the three of us. Then people started lining up, cutting front of each other, making sly remarks, trying the door, just acting like morons. Who are these people? Wasn't anyone raised to behave like adults?

                                              Our meal: 3 people, 3 pizzas, Nancy's chopped salad, two butterscotch budino's and a fig tart.

                                              Pizzas: Fennel Sausage, Rapini black olive anchovy, margherita.

                                              These were all good, the sausag and margherita were better. It's heretical to say this, but eating the margherita I realized how much I missed tomato sauce on the others. I guess that's the pizza I grew up with. The food was very good though, the sausage first rate. The salad was also very impressive as its chopped nature conceals all sorts of goodies. The Budino was, as before, unreal. Very, very good. I also opted for fresh orange juice as a beverage (fighting sniffles) and it was fresh pressed and excellent, a great alternative if you're not drinking wine (and that can feel strange in the middle of the day).

                                              Wild Eyed Raven

                                              1. Excellent pizza at the Mozza!! Had the salame (closest thing to pepperoni)..absolutely outstanding. I liked the sausage/garlic one quite a bit but wished the sausage was sliced bits instead of a frigging meatball! My only complaint would be the $4 sodas!! And the $8 plain salad. Next time I eat here, I'm bringing my own beverage.

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: LuckyLisp

                                                  Just drink wine. The wine list is unbelievably reasonable compared to a lot of places in town.