Hungry Hippo was being weird and drinking Coffee Bean that night.
We started off with Nancy's Chopped Salad ($15), an assembled salad of garbanzos, cherry tomatoes, red onions, pepperchinis, sliced salami and sliced mellow white cheese all sprinkled with oregano and accompanied by a soccer team pizza joint style Italian dressing. This salad was a little disappointing for being named after one of the owners. There was nothing spectacular about it and I could have easily assembled something similar in minutes for a lot less too.
Nancy's Chopped Salad. Next!
My neighbor used to work at a high-end restaurant off Pier 39 in San Francisco and taught me how to make the brussel sprouts they served at the place he worked. The sprouts are blanched then pan fried in butter and a little sugar until golden, then sprinkled with salt and pepper. After eating and making these (repeatable times) I am ruined and have yet to have brussel sprouts prepared any better way. The Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Prosicutto breadcrumbs ($8) were decent, but I prefer the ones I (or my ex-neighbor) makes. Especially since we got such a small container =(
Sprouts R Us
Joan had her oven revved up to keep our pizzas (the real reason to have the O experience) warm while we noshed on our appetizers, just in case you're wondering how these pizzas are glistening after all this time. The crust and dough were textbook for all the pies: slightly chewy and mildly sour dough with the right amount of golden crunchiness to the crust.
When we decided the arrange our Mozza2Go dinner the first words out of my mouth were: goat cheese, leeks, & bacon.
I had already been eying the Coach Farm goat cheese, leeks, scallions, garlic & bacon ($15) pie from previous visits so it was due time to dive right in. And it was delicious. I liked the leek and cool, creamy goat cheese combo, but the bacon could have been a little crispier.
Leeky, cheesy, porky pie
We all really loved the earthly Funghi misti, fontina, taleggio & thyme pizza ($15). Really, how can you go wrong with shrooms, cheese and dough?
Mozza Shroom Pie
The fennel sausage, panna & red onion ($15) was underwhelming. Although Mozza's homemade sausage is robust, it was not enough to carry the weight of the rest of the uninspiring pie toppings. Also, I was ruined from my last visit to Pizzeria Mozza where we ordered the Bianca with fontina, mozzarella, sottocenere and sage plus added sausage. Now that was superlative, and this was not.
Not quite the sausage fest it could be
For dessert we got the world famous Butterscotch Budino ($8). I had high hopes after hearing massive raves from across LA county about this amazing dessert. It was way too sweet and I could only manage one or two bites. Yeck!
The Budino bandit: killing taste buds with sweetness
The Perugian almond tart ($4) was more my style... for breakfast...with coffee. But at least it tempered the budino. The almond flavor was prolific, but the size was microscopic. We each took one bite and poof it was gone.
The AM almond tart
All in all the pies are fantastic and I still want more!
6610 Melrose Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90038