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Settebello Pizza in Pas?

http://la.eater.com/archives/2011/09/...

Alas, by the time I arrived to take the pictures, the entire restaurant was already closed. Most who've tried this in Henderson/Vegas seemed to enjoy the pies (even more so than say... Grimaldi's in LV, which I rather like), just looking for feedback from those who've visited the LA locale.

And yes, I will go and report. Someday.

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  1. I went yesterday and it superb. I have been to the Vegas location a handful of times and this location is just as great. About as authentic as you can get in LA as far as Neapolitan style pizza. Had the Bianca and Quattro Formaggi and both were great.

    1. I was there for lunch today, and had the Margherita DOC pizza. It had excellent flavor, but the crust was disappointing. I understand that authentic Neapolitan crust isn't supposed to be as crisp as, say, Mozza's crust, but this had the consistency of freshly baked pita bread just out of the oven. It wasn't at all crispy in the middle, on the bottom, or at the edges. It did have the requisite blackened spots on the bottom, which tasted great. I looked at the pizzas at other tables and they appeared to be similarly uncrispy. I'm hoping this is just a wrinkle that will get ironed out, because the pizza was excellent in every other respect, and perfectly seasoned. Maybe the problem is confined to lunchtime.

      The other thing that needs improvement is the wine temperature. My glass of Sangiovese was a little over room temperature, rather than cellar temperature. Maybe because the bar area is in a front, south-facing window, and partially bathed in sunlight during lunchtime? Fortunately the wine was served in a stemless glass with a rounded bottom and fit nicely into the mouth of the oversize water glass, which we used as an impromptu ice bucket.

      If they get the kinks worked out, this could become the best pizzeria between Highland Ave and Arcadia.

      26 Replies
      1. re: Peripatetic

        @peripatetic...sadly for you, the traditional Napolitana style pizza is not crispy at all...ya either love it or ya dont.

        1. re: lapizzamaven

          Correct. We got in for dinner last night. The crust was spot on. What a welcome addition to the Pasadena dining scene.

          One thing, though: I was quite surprised that a place that calls itself a Neapolitan pizza place - it's in the name - doesn't have a pizza Napoletana (i.e., a Margherita with anchovies) on its menu! Not to fear, though: they do have anchovies if you ask, but they're not on the menu.

          So, I had my Napoletana. I was happy.

          1. re: lapizzamaven

            > the traditional Napolitana style pizza is not crispy at all

            I understand it's not supposed to be crispy, but is it supposed to have the consistency of fresh pita bread? The crust didn't look at all like this:

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Tra...

            It looked more like this:

            http://lh4.ggpht.com/_2yL50eRSq1o/TNc...

            Anyway, I'll definitely try it again.

            1. re: Peripatetic

              Dommy and I had their pizza at the Henderson NV location and it was more like the Wiki photo. It probably is just a learning curve with new people but should work itself out eventually.

              1. re: Mattapoisett in LA

                > It probably is just a learning curve with new people

                That's what I hope. I think it might have been better to go at dinner. They are open from 11am to 10pm, so they must have two shifts, and I wouldn't be surprised if they weren't letting the newest team members try their hand during lunchtime.

              2. re: Peripatetic

                This place is just around the corner from my workplace. It was funny watching them take a couple of windows out to get the oven in. Have not tried it yet. Peri, what do you think would happen if I asked for the pizza well done? Would it be able to stand being cooked longer than they do normally, or would it come out a big, burnt mess? Thanks!

                1. re: WildSwede

                  I used to order my pies at Antica Pizzeria "well done" and they never burned it nor did they ever give me any attitude. It was the way i liked it.

                  -----
                  Antica Pizzeria
                  13455 Maxella Ave, Marina Del Rey, CA 90292

                   
                  1. re: lapizzamaven

                    THIS.

                    This is what our pizzas looked like at Settebello.

                    1. re: lapizzamaven

                      @lapizzamaven: I'll definitely order well done next time. Our pizza didn't look as good or as well done as the one in your photo.

                    2. re: WildSwede

                      > Peri, what do you think would happen if I asked for the pizza well done?

                      @WlidSwede: I can't say. I'm going to try that next time. I liked everything else about the pizza. As might be expected at an AVPN certified place, the ingredients were excellent. Even if they never manage to get it crisper than a steamed pita, I would probably still be okay with it.

                      1. re: Peripatetic

                        Thanks. Ordering pizza well done is a way of life for me - regardless where I am eating. I feel that in addition to the crust being crisper, the toppings get caramelized and thus, more flavorful. I also order fries and onion rings well done! ;-) But meat, medium rare.
                        On a side note, the pizza at The Luggage Room in the Del Mar Station builing is fantastic. Wood fired brick oven. I had the margherita, brought it back to work, and promptly wolfed it down. The whole thing. Delicious! Currently, they serve pizzas only during dinner and during lunch on Fridays. So good.

                    3. re: Peripatetic

                      Is that photo the pie you were served at Settebello? thats awful looking! And the other foto of the 'traditional" neapolitan pie looks awful too....unmelted cheese?

                      1. re: lapizzamaven

                        > Is that photo the pie you were served at Settebello?

                        @lapizzamaven: No, I just tried to find a photo that matched the pizza we had. To be fair, our pizza had a few blackened spots on the edges, but not blistering as in the first photo (or your photo from Antica). But the pizza definitely looked much more like the one in the second photo than the first.

                        1. re: Peripatetic

                          I see...i would def ask for well done...Im gonna try and get over there next week. Hope they get it right for ya!

                          1. re: Peripatetic

                            Photos of Settebello's capricciosa pie (sans mushroom/olives). Top, and bottom. Ignore the color filtering, obv.

                            Note the nice blistering on top (better than Bollini, IMO), and the rather light freckled leopard spots in the upskirt shot -- suggesting the oven could be hotter or the pie could be fired for just a tad bit longer?

                            Comments (except those complaining about soggy center/chewy crust) welcome.

                             
                             
                             
                            1. re: TonyC

                              Hi Tony. Did you order your pizza well done? Mine (ordered well done) was not as charred around the edges as your pizza, but the bottom was about the same if not a tiny bit more "leopardy". Wonder if they are having problems with the oven temp. The waitress told me it goes to over 1000 degrees.

                              1. re: WildSwede

                                WildSwede + Peripatetic:

                                FWIW, I didn't ask for my pie to be well done. Don't think it's a good idea, especially because they're all jazzed on authenticity/unsliced pizza, etc. Let's say they happen to double the cooking time to 3 min instead of 1.5. It'll undoubtedly destroy the constitution of the pizza.

                                These pies are clearly meant to be just a tad "moist" in the middle. By the first weekend of ops, Settebello was already churning out superior pizzas to most previously repped as "LA's best" (my crusade against PMozza will wage on eternally).

                                JG has already visited (multiple times, surely), be interesting to see the conclusion later http://blogs.laweekly.com/squidink/20...

                                1. re: TonyC

                                  > These pies are clearly meant to be just a tad "moist" in the middle.

                                  I'm fine with "moist in the middle". The problem I had on my visit was that it was pretty much moist to the edges. Judging from recent photos (like A5 KOBE's below) things seemed to have improved. I'm going again soon, so will report back.

                                  I appreciate that negative reports about the pizza at VPN joints are often attributable to the reporter "not getting it". But the pie we got had only slightly more rigidity than fresh pita, and about as much chew. Again, this was at lunchtime, shortly after they opened, so I'm ready to write it off as teething.

                              2. re: TonyC

                                Maybe another 15 in the oven would do the trick.

                                1. re: Jack Flash

                                  Yeah, but I'm not sure they would appreciate me "supervising" them! ;-)

                                  1. re: WildSwede

                                    Sounds like a work in progress. How would you compare it with Luggage Room? Other than being easier to get a table.

                                    1. re: mc michael

                                      Hmmm, that is a toughie. It has been a few months since I had Luggage Room, but I remember it being fantastic. I think the crust at Settebello had more chew to it. I remember thinking I would ask for more cheese(!) on the Luggage Room pizza next time. All in all, I think they are both fantastic pizzas and I would be happy to go to either at any given time.
                                      Once I return to Luggage Room (and eat in-house, I don't think it is fair as I got it to go last time and these are pizzas that really need to be eaten directly out of the oven), I will give a better comparison.

                                2. re: TonyC

                                  My DOC Margherita, perfectly charred

                                   
                                  1. re: A5 KOBE

                                    It does look like they're getting it right now. Did you ask for it well done?

                                    1. re: Peripatetic

                                      No I did not. The other pizza we ordered was the Settebello and it was a bit less charred but still great. The place was empty so maybe there was a little more attention to detail?

                            2. re: Peripatetic

                              Mine looked more like the second pizza, except that the crust was definitely charred in places (as it should be).

                              Fresh pita consistency - yeah, kinda, especially towards the middle.

                        2. It is easily among the best dozen of the new breed of Neapolitan pizzerias to hit L.A. in the last year. Learning curve for a new oven: okay. But the ingredients for the apps were badly sourced - cottony tomatoes, Spaldeen-textured bufala mozz, insipid oil. I hope it gets better, but I wouldn't be laying down any bets.

                          4 Replies
                          1. re: condiment

                            What are the dozen other Neaopiltan (sp?) Italian pizza joints of in LA that have opened up recently?

                            Thanks.

                            1. re: kevin

                              If Condiment is referring to Artisan pizza places, there have been quite a few:

                              Besides Settebello, there has been Pizza Antica at the SM Place, Eatalian, Stella Rosa, Il Dolce, Pizza e Vino, Olio, among others.

                              -----
                              Eatalian Cafe
                              15500 S. Broadway St., Gardena, CA 90248

                              1. re: kevin

                                Bollini is the othet great napoletano style pizza.

                              2. re: condiment

                                What a strange commentary..."easily among the best dozen..." but the sauce/tomatoes "cottony," the buf mozz' texture was "spaldeen" like, and the oil was "insipid." id hate to be the restaurant that you really dislike!

                              3. Went to Settebello Sunday and ordered take-out, ordering the "settebello". We had a piece right away in the car, as cardboard does a number on the crust. The crust was just right for me, even better than the crust at Vito's. I don't care for really crispy crust. My crusts need chew, firmness and flavor and Settebello is a real winner. They get that oven cooking at over 800 degrees F.

                                Re: Grimaldi's, I still like Grimaldi's better, but we will try Settebello in Henderson the next time we hit Vegas.

                                If you're looking for it, there is no obvious signage yet, as they just got approved, but it is located right between Roy's and Tender Greens on Colorado Blvd.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: Ogawak

                                  Even better than VITO's you say?

                                  1. re: orythedog

                                    It was only one time, and I'm going to have to try them the next time I hit Pasadena. Vito's has been my go-to pizza place in town, especially for NY style pizza.

                                2. Just got back. The place was dead (I was the only diner). Pizza came out in 5 minutes. Maybe less. Ordered the Margherita $11 (they also have the Margherita DOC which comes with Buffalo Mozzarella for $14) and ordered it well done.
                                  Pizza came out - looked fantastic!! Although, it didn't look well done - at least not what I expected. Just little spots of charring here and there. Tasted even better. I gobbled it down. This is definitely the type of pizza that you have to start eating immediately and not stop until it is gone/you are full. No take-out for this place as far as I am concerned. The cheese starts hardening as the pizza cools and the crust in the middle starts getting soggy pretty quickly.
                                  My waitress was nice. She told me that she and her husband (he makes the pizza) moved down from Henderson to work this one. She was at that location for 5 years. I think the owner was there (or a guy who looks a lot like the owner in the pics on their website). While we were talking, I asked her if my pizza was indeed well done, she said it was. I asked her if I wanted it more well done, what I should say. She said to say that I want the edges charred. Works for me. She said that it is a fine line as some people think it is burnt when there is some charring. I completely understand.
                                  Either way, I will definitely be back and soon.

                                  6 Replies
                                  1. re: WildSwede

                                    > She said to say that I want the edges charred.

                                    Thanks WildSwede, I'll try this next time. And nice sleuthing!

                                    1. re: WildSwede

                                      Ah, excellent news, WildSwede..will have to get out there soon! hope ocals patronize the place.

                                      1. re: lapizzamaven

                                        I went back again and asked for the edges charred. The waitress told me (sort of jokingly) that I was breaking the pizza chef's (what are they called?) heart by ordering it like that. After pummelling through it, I have to say that I think he was right. I think a little well done like I had it the first time was perfect. Asking for it charred on the edges was a little much - I could not discern the delicate flavors when it was that way, the char was the primary flavor.

                                        1. re: WildSwede

                                          pizzaiolo is what you call the man making the pizza