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Aug 28, 2011 11:29 AM

Double Zero

I tried the much-hyped Double Zero yesterday. Not bad, but didn't quite live up to the hype for me.

DZ fits squarely into that category of trendy overpriced wine bars that serves "authentic" Neopolitan pizza with toppings that are on the slightly pretentious side. If you wanted a dainty pizza topped with arugela, you'd be in luck. On the other hand if you wanted an extra large pie to share with the family topped with your kids' favorite pizza toppings, you'd be SOL. I'd love to find a happy medium in Calgary some day, but if I have to choose between the two extremes then my preference would have to be the dainty upscale faux Neopolitan (sigh).

My only point of reference for that category of pizza at this point is Pulcinella, so invariably there were comparisons. DZ's crust was rather bland IMO and not as fresh in texture as the one I enjoyed at Pulcinella recently. On the other hand, DZ's toppings were more flavorful. The sauces were both very good. I give a slight edge to Pulcinella but again YMMV -- my wife had the exact opposite opinion.

I still look forward to trying Rea's, Il Centro, and Without Papers. Hopefully I'll find a clear winner.

Il Centro
6036 3 St SW #106, Calgary, AB T2H 0H9, CA

1147 Kensington Crescent NW, Calgary, AB T2N 1X7, CA

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  1. I would say that Rea's is the most like what you are looking for and the most consistent of the 3 on your "must try" list. I love Without Papers but it is again smaller pizzas with more upscale toppings. Il Centro was good when I tried it but many on this board have mentioned that it is hit or miss (and it wasn't as good as Rea's).

    Il Centro
    6036 3 St SW #106, Calgary, AB T2H 0H9, CA

    7 Replies
    1. re: Merry113

      ^^I would agree that Rea's is probably closest to what you're looking for. Il Centro makes a great pie too, bud I haven't been in about 4 years because the service is TERRIBLE at that place - enough to keep me from going back. you might want to get take out from Il Centro hahah.

      I had also recommended Matador in your other thread, but I something has changed and it's not anywhere near as awesome as it used to be. the crust changed, the toppings changed, the cheese changed - it's weird! they still make a decent pizza, but it's not special or any different than what they're serving at any of the other mid-70s greek steakhouse bars around YYC.

      Il Centro
      6036 3 St SW #106, Calgary, AB T2H 0H9, CA

      1. re: nonlinear

        After reading nonlinear's recent review of Matadors, I have to admit, I stopped breathing for a moment. I grew up w/Matadors. Sure, I haven't been in a while (waistline issues), but It's bad now, really?? So last night, off I went!

        My findings: so sorry nonlinear, but I just can't agree. We enquired whether George had sold, and no, he was in earlier. For a basis of comparison, we ordered a pie we'd had before, a #17 (Traditional Greek), and being particularly critical (one piece was deconstructed, another w/crust segregated), it was 100% as good as ever. Crust was the same, toppings, sauce, cheese, everything. I could find no difference and loved every single bite. Perhaps you got a newbie making your pie, or unknowingly went on a seriously-off-day?

        My faith is restored.

        1. re: nutellaluvr

          ^^I don't know what happened, it's been like that the last few times i've eaten there. I've also noticed at least one other person (in the other thread) commented that Matador has gone down hill.

          I also remember that a few years ago, the crust wasn't a pan-fried Greek style they have now, but more of an American style (that's how I remember it, at least). Also, as I recall they used to have "real" pepperoni (red and approx. 1" diameter), not the 3" diameter pink-orange balogna-style "pepperoni" that they had now. Perhaps I'm crazy but I SWEAR the pizzas didn't used to come out like that - I would have never recommended them in that case, as you can find pies like that at any run-down 1970s greek steakhouse in Calgary.

          Is there a chance they serve a different style of pizza in the lounge? Because coincidentally, all of my other pizzas were ordered from the lounge, and these recent less-than-spectacular pies were ordered in the restaurant proper. Since they share a kitchen I assume they would serve the same pizza in both, but who knows?

          1. re: nonlinear

            I'll be the first to say that the protein component of their pizza has never been Matador's strong suit. And yes, I agree that the pepperoni they use is the ~3" version you describe. Hence the reason we tend to order veggie oriented pies (El Greco, Traditional Greek, Veg) although SO still likes the #20 and Bullfighters.

            I just don't remember the crust being any different ... I will quiz others. Perhaps I'm oblivious. But could I be THAT blind? Hmm.

            I wouldn't think the pizza in the lounge is any different, we're really just talking about a different seating area. Next time I see George I'm going to quiz him too. I'm not wild about their surcharge for 1/2 and 1/2 pizzas, so perhaps a conversation is necessary.

      2. re: Merry113

        Rea's will be the next one on my list then. I look forward to it.
        I'll still take my chances with Il Centro.

        So then by process of elimination, it seems that Rea's the only place in Calgary now that has struck the happy medium of fresh and "authentic Italian" in a take-out format. Good for them, they must be really cleaning up.

        BTW I didn't mean to start a new thread -- I was trying to add it to the "best pizza in calgary" thread but apparently goofed. How do I get this moved?

        Il Centro
        6036 3 St SW #106, Calgary, AB T2H 0H9, CA

        1. re: DoubleFine

          I don't know if they're "cleaning up", but I have had them refuse to make pizza because the kitchen was too busy.

          1. re: 23skidoo

            They are a very busy restaurant & I've never had their pizza as takeout. We always eat there. If you decide to go that route you MUST make reservations.