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Restaurants & Bars 19

I Finally Found Acceptable Pizza Near SF

Niki Rothman | Nov 3, 2005 12:16 PM

It's TOTO'S (!) at 1690 El Camino (east side) - kind of between Burlingame and Millbrae. I am so happy to have found this place. I used to go to the now defunct Toto's near SFSU, and recently heard it was on the penninsula (another location in Belmont).
It's a self-service pizzeria, not a very comfortable place to eat, but very acceptable - very clean, and I'd drive there for lunch from SF anyday rather than eat at Arinell or Delfina. It's a shocking statement, but that's my personal opinion. Haven't tried A16 yet, despite all the recs., but will soon. I've only been to Toto's once, but will return ASAP. Already I can go out on a limb and make a couple of recommendations: avoid lots of toppings - sogginess could easily be a problem. It's not NY pizza, but CLOSE. The crust is thin, but thicker than Arinell or Delfina, and by the time we were 3/4 through our medium pie the crust was starting to sog up. Not a real problem though, just don't order a mess of raw ingredients. The crust does crack a bit, but not so much that you think you're eating a cracker (Arinell/Delfina). Neither is it too thick or rubbery. Excellent light but savory marinara. Just greasy enough. High quality whole milk mozzarella - you can tell. We had garlic and mushrooms - wonderful!

I noticed they sell their meat sauce to take home for $5 a quart. This was a "solid" gold find - because it's more a solid than a liquid! Once diluted with about 2 cups plain old water, it became two separate pasta dinners for four (!), and tasted (with fresh grated parm. of course)just like the old-school pasta served up by the NY-Italian moms who were my childhood neighbors. Apparently, according to the menu, the same NY based Italian-American family has been running the Toto's operation since the early 1930's
when they started out in the Mission.

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