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Another pizza question: Dopo vs. Pizzaiolo, what's better?

t
teresalynne Nov 2, 2007 09:39 AM

I have been unable to eat fats of any kind for several months now due to a medical condition and am finally back to a normal diet. I have been dreaming of pizza and tonight is the night! I'm just curious if these two places are a wash when it specifically comes to the pizza - I've had Pizzaiolo recently and loved it, but am curious about Dopo. I went there when they first opened and remembered liking it, but can't remember well enough to compare the two. Specifically, is either one more authentic? I'm more interested in dough quality rather than toppings, although those of course matter as well. Any thoughts are appreciated!

  1. Morton the Mousse Nov 2, 2007 03:38 PM

    I've been to both restaurants more times than I can count...

    Dopo Vs Pizzaiolo - East Bay Italian Smackdown

    Dopo does the following better:

    pasta
    crudo
    charcuterie

    Pizzaiolo does the following better:

    pizza
    salads
    secondi
    dessert
    drinks

    Close Call:

    antipasti - really good at both places, though I'll give the nudge to Dopo
    contorni - I'll give this to Dopo as well, because you can get the verdura platter which features a reasonable portions of all the sides. That said, Pizzaiolo does some damn good contorni.

    Non-food related:

    Service - totally variable. Both places have some servers who are fantastic, some who are not so great. Both are good places to find a server you like and stick with him or her.

    Atmosphere - I prefer Pizzaiolo. Great music, fun and lively feel, beautiful outdoor patio

    Good for large groups - definitely Pizzaiolo. It's a much larger space, with many big tables. Big groups at Dopo have to wait a loooong time if they don't have a ressie.

    Reservations - Pizzaiolo takes them on a limited basis, Dopo only takes them for parties of six or more. Both are extremeley popular, so expect a wait.

    And the winner is...

    Dopo. That may just reflect my preference for pasta over pizza. However, I've had more meals at Dopo where I've left blown away and dumbfounded by how amazing the food was.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Morton the Mousse
      c
      chemchef Nov 2, 2007 04:16 PM

      Can I just say that one other thing that Pizzaiolo has on Dopo is a website! I'm not impressed with restaurants that don't a website nowadays, even a simple one stating hours/directions, etc (although a sample menu is preferable).

      Pizzaiolo recently redid theirs and I must say, its fantastic. Someone needs to give Dopo a heads-up.

      1. re: chemchef
        Morton the Mousse Nov 2, 2007 04:25 PM

        Good point. Pizzaiolo updates the on-line menu daily which is a huge draw.

      2. re: Morton the Mousse
        The Dive Nov 2, 2007 05:08 PM

        I completely agree with all of Morton's comments, except that I give the edge to Pizzaiolo, if only for the drinks and wine list. Well, and the pizza. But you can hardly go wrong with either. But if it's pizza you are after, go to Pizzaiolo.

        1. re: The Dive
          oakjoan Nov 2, 2007 05:25 PM

          I've been to Pizzaiolo a wimpy 4 times. Each time I've been disappointed. The meatballs were very good. Once we had pizza and it was great. Last time we went with 2 other people and had a very unmemorable dinner. The pasta with mushrooms and breadcrumbs I had was pretty bland. The grape sorbet in one of our desserts was totally lacking in grape flavor.

          I really want to like this place. The owner is wonderful, the place is nice looking and I love the idea of the food....however, it's also verrrry loud. I don't understand how Morton the M can tell what kind of music they're playing because of the noise. If I can't hear what the person sitting across from me is saying, it's too loud. One shouldn't have to shout at ANY restaurant, especially one that isn't cheap.

          Actually, they were playing the Stones last time I was at Pizzaiolo, but I'm a big foe of music in restaurants. Because you can't really hear it over all the din of conversations, it becomes an irritant imho. Reminds me of why I hate the casinos in Reno.

          Dopo, on the other hand, (to which I haven't been since they expanded) has always served good food and wasn't loud. It probably wasn't loud because it only held about 8 people. I agree about their pizzas. Wonderful. I also had a lamb ragout-type thing about 2 years ago which still causes me to salivate when I think of it.

      3. c
        Cheesy Oysters Nov 2, 2007 03:24 PM

        Boy it is a matter or opinion. I prefer the pizza at Dopo myself. I've been to Pizzaiolo a couple times and I prefer Dopo on all fronts except for the fact that P has cocktails! You can't go wrong at either place. Have a great carb night.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Cheesy Oysters
          t
          teresalynne Nov 2, 2007 03:36 PM

          What do you like better about the pizza at Dopo?

          1. re: teresalynne
            c
            Cheesy Oysters Nov 2, 2007 04:48 PM

            Well pretty much all of it. I like the crust, cheese, sauce, and toppings better! It's just personal preference but it's what I like. I really like Dopo's simple cheese pizza and occassionally get the pizzas with toppings. The toppings are really simple and they don't put too much on the pizza so the crust stays crisp. I also think the cheese covers more of the pizza at Dopo and there is more of it.

            Now I've heard good things about Piazzaiolo's fried chicken but haven't been back to try it. I think they used to serve it on Friday night but not the Friday I was there--of course I didn' t check out their online menu!

            For what it is worth, a friend of mine who is Italian loves Dopo and thinks it is the closest to what he remembers from home. But I'm sure pizza varies in Rome as well.

        2. JasmineG Nov 2, 2007 11:44 AM

          I like the pizza more at Pizzaiolo, and I think the dough is tastier, but then I haven't had Dopo's pizza in a while, simply because I love their pastas so much that I can't go there without getting pasta. I think that you should go to one place tonight and another one tomorrow, and report back about which one you like better! That's the way to celebrate your ability to eat pizza again.

          2 Replies
          1. re: JasmineG
            t
            teresalynne Nov 2, 2007 11:56 AM

            Hmm, ok, good idea. So the pasta at Dopo is really good? I will definitely be trying that tomorrow night! On a side note, is there any consensus if one or the other has better pasta? I've never had the pasta at either one.

            1. re: teresalynne
              JasmineG Nov 2, 2007 12:18 PM

              Dopo has much better pasta than Pizzaiolo in my opinion, and I think that that's the consensus here as well. The pasta at Dopo is really fantastic.

          2. Morton the Mousse Nov 2, 2007 09:43 AM

            I preffer the pizza at Pizzaiolo. The wood fire oven makes a big difference. That said, I prefer Dopo for the overall restaurant experience/quality of non-pizza menu items.

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