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Vitte – St. Helena (a rant about minimalist pizza toppings)


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Vitte – St. Helena (a rant about minimalist pizza toppings)

Jennie Sheeks | May 8, 2003 01:44 PM

I was housesitting last night in Calistoga and got the urge for pizza. With limited upvalley options, I decided to order a pizza to go from Vitte (formerly Tomatina). I chose a large (twelve slices) “Bada-Bing!!” pizza, with coppa salami, artichoke hearts, fontina cheese, vitte tomato sauce and roasted garlic paste. Mmm.
I vaguely remembered that Tomatina’s pizzas had been rectangular and assumed (correctly it turned out) that Vitte’s were the same. Now, I don’t know about you but it seems reasonable to me that each slice of pizza should have some of each of the advertised toppings, particularly if said pizza just put you out $18.25.
As it turned out, the pieces of the pizza that did have some of each of the toppings – and they were few – were very good. The crust was crispy on the edges and chewier towards the center. It’s just that the promised toppings didn’t make it to very many of the pieces. At least 3 pieces had only a translucent rubbing of tomato sauce, no cheese, no coppa, and no artichoke hearts. A couple slices had only the same smear of sauce and cheese on part of the slice. A few more slices had only sauce rub, random bits of cheese and a scrap of either coppa or part of an artichoke heart. I don’t like huge glops of sauce, but I usually like a bit more than this. And the corner pieces didn’t really count as pieces because they were only about 2 bites big, so I guess the pizza was really an eight-slice pizza. I don’t like minimalist art and I didn’t appreciate the minimalist approach on my pizza. But I ate the pizza anyway because by the time I opened the pizza box I was back at the house in Calistoga and I was hungry. And it was good, just not what I really wanted.
I like Vitte’s piadines (pizza crust folded over salad toppings) and pastas so I’ll stick to them in the future. But I’m feeling just ornery enough to go back and ask for the manager today. Is it expecting too much to assume that some or maybe even all of the toppings will make it onto all the slices?

1016 Main St. (next to Merryvale)
St. Helena

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