the haven / kensington – san diego, ca

After my little solo trip to Heaven Sent and after Jake’s game that evening, I suggested we head over to The Haven Pizzeria in Kensington for dinner. I had a LivingSocial deal and had read about the pizza spot on CC’s blog and I had a hankering to visit.


[haven twists – parmesan & garlic bread sticks / $4.99]

I can never resist a breadstick, even though we’re already eating pizza. I’ll have more carbs with my carbs, thank you! The breadsticks looked really good with that Parmesan and garlic all over it, but I thought they were too thin. The thinness made them more crunchy than they should be, so they were a bit dried out. The flavor was good but it didn’t seem like there was enough soft, fluffy bread in there.We did get a choice of two dipping sauces and we got the roasted garlic sauce and the spicy pizza. The roasted garlic sauce was excellent – good amount of garlic without being overpowering. The spicy pizza was also good – it was a marinara sauce with a little heat, but not so much heat that I couldn’t handle it.

This appetizer seemed a bit on the pricey side since we only got 5 breadsticks. That’s a dollar a piece!


[dave’s meatballs – meatballs baked in tomato sauce, topped with parmesan / $7.99]

The meatballs came out pipping hot and I loved how the cheese got a little crusty around the edges. The meatballs again were just okay, nothing special about them and again I didn’t think this was quite worth the price.


[caesar salad / $5.99 small]

The Caesar salad was pretty good. I liked the lightly tossed dressing and the homemade croutons tossed in the salad. I also like that they did shavings of Parmesan on the salad.


[build your own pizza with candied bacon, mascarpone cheese and red sauce]

CC had mentioned that she got a pizza with mascarpone cheese on top, as recommended by the staff. This I had to try out! I really liked the mascarpone cheese with it since it has that extra bit of sweetness. Normally I prefer ricotta, but mascarpone was a nice substitute for it here (though I still think I like ricotta a bit better).

I surprised Jake by requesting we try the red sauce instead of going for garlic, but I felt like I wanted to try a more basic pizza. The candied bacon was a bit overkill to me since it was sweet protein piled on top of a sweet creamy cheese. It needed something else to break up the sweetness – some onions or garlic or something salty. This was our own fault though since we weren’t sure how the flavors would all mix in together. Don’t get me wrong – the candied bacon was excellent, but I had already topped out on my limit of sweet things for the day!


The crust’s bottom was done nicely with a good enough browning. This is a bit thicker than NY style thin crust and it held up well without being too soggy on the top. It wasn’t quite crunchy, but the crust had a good chew and flavor.

Would I come back? Yes, I would – but I’d skip the appetizers and go for more trying more pizza combinations. They have a “PBTO” which has hazelnut pesto, candied bacon, tomato and caramelized onion which sounds really good to me (especially the pesto part). I might even be willing to try their “Spicy Pesto” which has the spicy pizza sauce with hazelnut pesto, fresh basil and fresh mozzarella. They have some good creations and a good amount of different toppings (artichoke, brussel sprouts or pepper jack cheese, anyone?) and also offer wheat and gluten free crusts for an additional charge. I think it’s safe to say that we’ll back to try more items at The Haven!

The Haven Pizzeria
4051 Adams Ave.
San Diego, CA 92116

The Haven on Urbanspoon


mary likes baking.

6 Responses

  1. Hi Mary – TC tried the PBTO during our last visit which we really liked. It had a great combination of ingredients. Glad you guys got to try out the Haven.

    • mary says:

      Hi CC – I think I would have liked our pizza a lot more if I hadn’t had that mousse dessert earlier, haha. Too many sweets for me that day! The PBTO sounds really good to me, hazelnut pesto sounds so good!

  2. Mike says:

    You should check out Isa.bella Artisan Pizzeria over by Costco on Morena. It’s new and has the best pizza we’ve ever had in San Diego. Let us know what you think!

  3. Faye says:

    The pizza looks really good. I’m curious about how different you think ricotta and mascarpone taste. I want to go to the grocery store to pick out two tubs of those things and do a taste test at home (except I’m not much of a cheese person). Do they make the pizza soggy?

    The meatball looks quite grand. Was it a good portion for $7.99? I got 1 meatball at Cucina for $7 recently so I’m curious about the meatball price tag here.

    • mary says:

      Hi Faye – Mascarpone is traditionally and usually used as a “dessert” cheese in my experience. It tastes a little sweeter to me than ricotta but they both have that soft consistency. My favorite store bought ricotta to use is the whole milk ricotta they have at Trader’s Joes if you’re interested in giving it a try. It’s I think $2-$3 dollars – much cheaper than mascarpone. I prefer TJ’s version to the Angelo & Frano one I have seen in the water. Better deal, too. They don’t make the pizza soggy. You could try getting slices of plain cheese pizza and putting it on yourself!

      I think there was like 4 meatballs in that bowl. I didn’t think it was that good of a portion, they were small meatballs and they were just eh.

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