Neapolitan pizza guru Anthony Mangieri's new Una Pizza Napoletana is open in San Francisco, and pane joined the salivating masses who waited (and waited, and waited) in line during the first week for the Mangieri experience.
Let's just say up-front that unless you think that waiting two hours for a pizza that you'll probably scarf down in 15 minutes is a good use of your time, it would probably be best to hold off visiting this place on the weekend for a while.
Anyway, pane got the margherita pizza with San Marzano sauce, buffalo mozzarella, olive oil, basil, and salt; and the filletti, which is the same with cherry tomatoes instead of the San Marzano sauce. As it turns out, the toppings pale in comparison to the crust.
"I don't think I've thought about crust except when chewing on the frame of a pizza, but the flavor of this was so robust and insistent it blew the doors off the thin skin of oil, cheese, and tomato on top," pane says. "Deep, earthy and quite chewy."
The 12-inch pizzas are $20 each, and pane says she'd recommend one per person. Despite reports of rude service at the original UPN, pane found the servers and hosts to be incredibly nice, and she admits to a weakness for Anthony Mangieri: "I happen to love a chef who is a little bit crazy, someone who wakes up in the morning burning to create something specific, beautiful and true."
Meanwhile, a new Italian bakery in downtown Berkeley is offering Roman-inspired pizzas, oblong and crisp-crusted, including one with "excellent smoky ham and arugula," says ernie in berkeley. PiQ, for Pane Italiano Qualita, also offers panini, focaccia with pizza-like toppings (like prosciutto di Parma and mozzarella), Italian soda and coffee, and baked sweets. With a staff chattering in Italian, Wi-Fi, and sidewalk seating, it's a fun place to hang out, ernie says.
Una Pizza Napoletana [SOMA]
200 11th Street, San Francisco
PiQ [East Bay]
91 Shattuck Square, Berkeley
Discuss: Una Pizza Napoletana (very long) review
PiQ, new Italian bakery, downtown Berkeley