North Beach Pizza ****1/2 (Out Of 5) Rated For Take-Out (Culinary Bucket List Series #1)
"Your body is not a temple, it's an amusement park. Enjoy the ride."
~Anthony Bourdain, Kitchen Confidential: Adventures In The Culinary Underbelly
Okay, so yesterday Alan and I decided to try one of those restaurants I told you about a while back. You know... the ones on my culinary bucket list?! Anyway, a couple weeks ago, Alan and I decided to give North Beach Pizza a shot, but unfortunately we couldn't find a place to park. That's a problem in the North Beach neighborhood of San Francisco, so I don't usually take points off a restaurant because of it. Still, it was disappointing at the time because pizza on that particular day would have been just what the doctor ordered! But what a difference 2 weeks, and the unofficial transition between summer, and autumn, known as Labor Day, makes!
With less students. Less tourists. And less honeymooners walking and driving about, finding a place to park yesterday was a lot easier! We found a place on the first pass down Grant avenue! So, as I was completely beat from a day of photography in San Francisco, Alan very sweetly offered to walk across the street and into the cute little corner pizza shop and order us 2 slices (yep, they also sell by the slice) of pizza to go. When I am visiting a new pizza place for the first time, I always order a slice with just cheese, so I can get an accurate taste of the sauce, cheese, and crust as separate components. Each, by the way, was first rate! The sauce was spiced quite nicely, all the flavor it should have, but not so much you can't taste the lovely flavor of the tomato. The cheese was just Mozzarella, but it was a nice quality cheese, with a slightly smoky flavor, and there was plenty of it! And finally the crust... OMG... yes... it was authentic sourdough!
I was hoping that a pizza shop, located in North Beach, and calling itself... North Beach Pizza... wouldn't make the mistake of using any dough other than sourdough! If they had made that mistake, I would have taken at least 3 stars off! But they didn't, and the crust was perfect! Thick, but not at all doughy. The sauce, the cheese and the crust came together very nicely! The initial service was a bit slow, it took about 8 minutes to finally be waited on., That wasn't good, but once the order was taken it was boxed and we were ready to go in just a couple minutes. The last test was the fact that we were taking it home to eat, which meant taking it during commute time, through the downtown area and across the Bay Bridge into the East Bay. Yikes!
Traffic in the San Francisco yesterday was a damn nightmare! It took us 1 hour and 45 minutes to get home, and the pizza held up perfectly! It didn't loose it's shape, it didn't get hard or oily. It warmed up in the microwave exactly as it should have! It was yummy! Microwaving it didn't cook the crust a second time, making it hard, instead it was just, dare I repeat myself? Okay, why not... it was YUMMY! I am sure we will be back for another slice of pizza at North Beach Pizza, from time to time, and we may give the shop located here in Berkeley a try one day. But as a rule I don't usually patronize restaurants in Berkeley, because the parking literally drives me crazy! But hey, we found a place to park yesterday in North Beach, so you never know! These things are almost always left up to the whims of the food Gods!
"The discovery of a new dish does more for the happiness of the human race than the discovery of a star."