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Is Olivella's really that good (dfw)?

I'm crazy about the pizza at Campania. And being able to bring your own wine certainly puts it on the "super-afforable and delicious" list for us. It's really small, though, and pretty dang chilly in the winter with the doors opening and closing constantly.

I've heard really great things about Olivella's. Is it that good? Better than Campania?

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  1. I hated Olivella's.

    The sauce was very sweet and there was very little cheese on the pizza. When I say very little I don't mean "less than Pizza Hut", I mean there were large, three-bite expanses of pizza with no toppings at all other than sauce. We had a pancetta pizza that had one bite of sundried tomato for the whole pie, one tiny taste of pancetta per slice, and about half the pie had cheese on it. The "kids" pizza was the same way - dough with sauce on it and a suggestion of cheese.

    The salad was excellent. The wine was overpriced.

    For a small pancetta pizza, a kid pizza, a salad and two glasses of wine (total, not each) it was over $60 by the time you factored in tip. I find that price to be completely ridiculous for two adults and a small child. It also precludes me giving them another chance.

    The place is really tiny as well, so you won't get any improvement there.

    Full disclosure - I have not been to Campania.

    1 Reply
    1. re: dalaimama

      Oy vay! Olivella's was going to be my next new pizza place to try!

    2. just my $.02, but I think Grimaldi's pizza is better than both. Admittedly, however, I am not impressed with Campania as the crust has been soggy on each of my two visits.

      1. My friends and I weren't that impressed with Olivella, but we haven't been since it first opened. Also the group as a whole is a bunch of Campania's loyalists, though I'll also admit I've been gettign soggy crust there lately.

        2 Replies
        1. re: vktp

          The couple of times I have been to Olivella, I have been very impressed. I have gotten the pear, walnut and gorgonzola pizza so I haven't had the tomato sauce. That particular pizza, IMO, is very good.

          I used to be a fan of Campania but have not had as good pizzas there as of late. They don't use a wood burning oven on the McKinney location. They do apparently have one at the one in Southlake. On the last visit, I tried one of the pies with anchovies and was pretty disappointed in how dried out the anchovies were.

          1. re: vktp


            After reading your comment, i couldn't agree more. I did see this post on the Dallas eats blog a few weeks back. There is an email address of one of the owners who takes comments, suggestions very seriously. I was thinking about emailing him because i hate to think they forgot about us here in Dallas and can only focus on Southlake!

          2. Here is my take. I think Olivella's is the best pie in town. It's is as close to real Neopolitan Pizza as you can find. I'm suprised that you found the sauce sweet as they use only DOC San Marzano tomatoes in it. The sweetness must be from the tomatoes themselves as they do not add any sugar (had a long discussion with the owner) A pie like that, is all about the quality of the ingredients (less is more). However, it is expensive. I do enjoy the small atmosphere, you just need to go at off times. I haven't been to Campania, but will give it a shot if not surely for the BYOW.

            Grimaldi's is more of the NY style and they are really 2 different animals. I think Grimaldi's is also extremely good and a great addition to the Dallas Pie scene.

            1 Reply
            1. re: J.R.

              I've never, ever seen a pizza that had large holes of just bread and sauce before. Not even when I was in Italy. We didn't have "less is more" so much as "ingredients listed may or may not actually be on your pie".

              We were there at an off time and it wasn't busy, so I just can't figure it out. I really wanted to like the place after hearing people rave about it on CH, but instead I was really disappointed.

            2. I picked up a pizza and a couple of salads to take home last weekend and a 1" strip of crust around the entire edge was burned black. Carcinogenic, inedible blackness.

              1. Good info. Thanks! I think I'll probably stick to Campania. I agree that the crust has been a little hit and miss recently. That didn't used to be the case. But, I'm not really interested in finding another place to spend $60 on pizza. If I'm going to spend some money I think I'd rather go to Nonna and really drop a buck. That place is worth the extra money. And there's so much more than just pizza...

                1. Olivella's is the best pizza in Dallas. But of course everyone has their own opinion. Everything about it from the crispy (some call it burned) crust, to the pure tomato sauce, to the use of buffalo mozzerella sparingly placed on the pizza is all very authentic. Having lived in southern Italy and traveled extensively throughout Italy, this is very unique to the Naples area. Go to Rome, Milan, etc. your pizza will be different and will have more cheese. Friends of mine who live in Milan say 'they can't get good pizza in Milan"...so go figure!!!

                  Grimaldi's is good but different. It is a New Yorker's interpretation of Neapolitan pizza. I don't even consider that New York pizza (and i have also lived in NY!). They don't cover the sauce completely either. NY pizza should have more cheese and should be bigger slices and should be greasier (just stating the facts here). Coal Vines does a better version of what NY pizza should be but it is still not on par since some call it Connecticut style. Either way, it is better than Grimaldi's.

                  On another note, i don't think Olivella's pizza is more expensive than Grimaldi's. I think it is just the wine that puts it over the top. That's why Campania is a good change of pace with the BYOB.

                  1. Yes, it is that good. Their wine is pricey. I had a glass of Chianti for $12. Not outrageous, just a little pricey.. The 14" pizza was about $20 but worth every bit of that price, Completely authentic. Best pizza i've had in Dallas. I have a pizza oven in my backyard, so I eat a lot of pizza. theirs is so good that i am trying to recreate their sauce. Anyone have their recipe???.

                    BTW, from 2-5 their Metro pizza is BOGO. Best deal in town. I think that is M-F.