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Settebello Pizza in Pas?

  • TonyC Sep 28, 2011 09:37 AM
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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: Peripatetic

                                      Anytime! ;-)

                                    2. 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

                                          1. re: PandanExpress

                                            Thank you!!

                                    3. Finally got a chance to check it out for lunch this afternoon with some co-workers. We were all pretty happy with the results. I had heard a few mixed reviews, but I think their pizza is pretty well executed.

                                      My marinara had a tiny bit too much salt, but was otherwise pretty solid.

                                      1. I went Sunday night and thought it was great. I got the Margherita DOC. The crust was fine, with the right texture between the tomatoey top and the slightly crispy bottom. The tomatoes were great with just the right amount of salt and tang. I think I had the best mouthful of pizza since I could remember when I bit into one part of my pizza and it had the perfect amount of tomato, cheese, and bread.

                                        I didn't have to order my pizza well done and it came out with the right amount of char.

                                        I also liked their arugula salad. There's no false advertisement there, it really is just a plate of arugula, but dressed with a nicely balanced mixture of oil and lemon. The dressing brings out the spiciness of the arugula very well.

                                        1. So, I made the trip from the other end of the 110 last Saturday to try this place out.

                                          1 word...EXCELLENT! Had the misto (mixed meats, veg, and cheese) and the Settebello with bufala. No special requests on doneness, and the pizza came out perfetto!

                                          Seems maybe the wait staff could use a little tightening (got my pizza before my app, but they then realized my pizza was for someone else! LOL). It was rich, creamy, and I thought the pnie nuts were a nice touch to add texture, but that pancetta was the true topper for me. Very porky, coating my lips with pig balm. Wonderful!

                                          When they asked if I was interested in desert, and they gave me to list of items they have, I questioned the lack of gelato. They stated they didn't have room in the back to make gelato. So, I hinted at Bulgarini down the street, and how they can produce for commercial businesses. We'll see!

                                          All in all I had a great time and excellent food.

                                          Of course, I hit up Bulgarini afterwards for that fantastic Sicilian pistachio gelato and canteloupe sorbetto.

                                          I will be back. Maybe in a week or 2.

                                          1. Went for lunch today and loved it. Got a Margherita and asked for it crispy. They did it perfectly for my tastes. Preferred it to Antica or Ortica. Also a good arugula salad.

                                            1. Finally got to Settebello over the weekend. I was excited to have a Neopolitan pizza place to fill in for Antica during their hopefully brief absence. In summary though, I can not recommend Settebello either as a Neopoliatan pizza or as the best pizza on this side of town. I am dissapointed.

                                              First, the pizza is American sized. Of course, more is more better, but I think it prevents the pizza from cooking the way it should. The good news is the dough is excellent, and the oven seems to be spot on as well. So why the frowns? Well, Neopolitan Pizza is a delicate thing. The hardest part for an American is to back off of the toppings so as not to ruin the thin crust. If you have been to Pizzeria Bianco in Phoenix, you will understand. The trick is a SMALL amount of exquisite toppings- that is where the magic is. The tomatoes at Settebello were of mediocre quality and ladelled on American thick. The result was Margherita soup. The other pizza we had was not significantly better.

                                              Of course it is hard to control the quality of pizzas coming out, that is why the owner at Pizzeria Bianco is always in the kitchen. It is possible that our pizzas were not up to the usual standard, but I am not sure that it is worth another sixty bucks to answer that question.

                                              -----
                                              Settebello Pizzeria Napoletana
                                              625 E Colorado Blvd, Pasadena, CA 91101

                                              3 Replies
                                              1. re: Oqzn

                                                What do you mean by "American sized?" The pies we had at Settebello were personal size, similar to what I've had in Italy.

                                                1. re: Jack Flash

                                                  They are a bit bigger than most Neopolitan pizzas I've seen.

                                                  I have only had their pizza marinara, but I've gone with people who ordered toppings, and I actually felt like they did a decent job at *not* over-topping the pizzas, at least considering how many ingredients some of the pies have.

                                                  There are places I've been which are better, but at least Settebello has reasonable prices -- I found it less pretentious and more fairly priced than, say, Mother Dough.

                                                2. re: Oqzn

                                                  I have been to Pizzeria Bianco and was not impressed in the least. I think both Bollini and Settebello are better (without the pretentious wait). The last time I went to Settebello, I ordered my usual Margherita and added prosciutto crudo. The waitress asked me if I wanted it uncooked and placed on top of the pizza after it was cooked. Sure, I said. When it came, it was in small pieces and had been placed on before baking. It was luscious, porky, salty deliciousness. This pizza I didn't order well done, just to see how it came out. I realized I like it cooked a little longer than what they usually do.

                                                3. just had settebello. got the 4 cheese pizza and was very impressed. it's a solid neopolitan pizza. i'll be happy to go back.

                                                  4 Replies
                                                  1. re: cdub

                                                    Embarrassed to admit i didnt get to Settebello till yesterday, after all, with such widely divergent comments who knew what to expect...Well, for my money, the Margherita DOC( bufala mozz) w/ a fennel sausage topping left me as happy as can be....very similar to my fave pies at Antica in MDR which makes sense as Settebello is a VPN pizzeria...A beautiful Stefano Ferrara oven...check out the photos and get thee to Pasadena!

                                                     
                                                     
                                                     
                                                    1. re: lapizzamaven

                                                      Glad you finally made it out there and enjoyed it! I was wondering when I'd see a post from you about this place. I try to go to Pasadena at least once a month, and as previously stated, the side trip to Bulgarini down the street is an excellent dessert option. Especially with this heat lately.

                                                      I actually hit up the Settebello in Henderson, NV (and Batali's Otto on the strip proper) this past weekend. Once again, excellent pizza, and very consistent with the Pasadena location.

                                                      1. re: Novelli

                                                        @Novelli, the owner(Brad) told me he was trained at the Vegas branch...I also loved the Vegas Grimaldi's...it was much better than Scottsdale and Dallas...but it was also 2+ years ago...very pleased by Pasadena though...hope they stay busy!

                                                        1. re: Novelli

                                                          The Henderson, NV location was recently mentioned on Unique Eats.

                                                    2. I had a really nice pie here yesterday. In comparison to Pizza y Vino, another certified SoCal Pizzeria, I'd give the edge in crust to Pizza y Vino and an overwhelming edge in sauce to Settebello. That sauce ...

                                                      3 Replies
                                                      1. re: JAB

                                                        What about Settebello vs. Fuoco? I don't know anything as wet as Fuoco right now, save for Mother Dough.

                                                        1. re: TonyC

                                                          I haven't made it to Fuoco yet.

                                                        2. re: JAB

                                                          Yeah, I love the sauce. Even if the pizza I am ordering does not usually come with it, I have them put it on. Delicious!