pizzeria mozza / downtown san diego
After we got sugared up from Frost Me Gourmet Cupcakes, we headed over to Pizzeria Mozza for some lunch. I’ve been wanting to visit Pizzeria Mozza since they opened last year, but I heard they had some trouble working out the kinks. Since they’re now listed in the Eater San Diego 38, I figured they had finally worked everything out and it was time to visit.
Here’s their menu, which you can click to enlarge and read in it’s full glory.
Jake and I first heard about Mozza from Chef Keegan at D Bar while we were on the Bacon Crawl last year. He told us about this restaurant called Mozza (he meant Osteria Mozza, though) that has a Mozzarella Bar and lots of different kinds of mozzarella to try (there’s more than one?!). Pizzeria Mozza is within the Mozza Restaurant Group run by Nancy Silverton, Mario Batali and Joseph Bastianich – so they have some of the same crazy cheeses from the other Mozza. I hope to visit Osteria Mozza soon for a cheese tasting!
[pane bianco / $4]
We decided to share a few things to try out the menu. Bread sounded like a good idea to me and this pane bianco with extra virgin olive oil fit the bill.
You get two extra thick slices of grilled, crusty bread. There are flecks of garlic with olive oil that’s grilled right into the bread. The bread is fluffy on the inside and the outer part gets a wonderful golden crust from the grilling. The olive oil they use is quite distinct and even a little bit peppery. It had a nice, rich flavor that enhanced the flavor of the bread. Very simply and very delicious.
[fried mozzarella alla pizzaiola / $9]
Jake wanted to try the fried mozzarella (as if I would say “no”) and Jake, T and I each got one ball to try. The fried mozzarella balls are served in a robust pizzaiola sauce that I actually didn’t really care for because it had whole black olives in it (yuck! olives!). I saved a fried mozzarella ball from the evil olive laden sauce and ate it on it’s own. The mozzarella was so creamy and gooey and wonderful and made me do a little happy dance. The outer crust is not too thick and has a perfect golden crust to house the hot, melted cheese. They use a different mozzarella for these balls than they use on the pizza (I don’t remember the specific kind though).
[bacon, salumi, fennel sausage, pancetta, tomato & mozzarella pizza / $18]
The boys wanted the meatiest of meat pizzas on the menu and I agreed to try that. This one is like a really fancy “meat lover’s” pizza using much finer ingredients. Each meat was really delicious on it’s own. The fennel sausage looks like it’s made in house and is kind of chunky-free form style (I thought it was a meatball at first from the look of it). I actually ended up eating all of the meats separately so I could enjoy the pizza on it’s own (I personally like simple just-a-few-toppings pizza). Each of the meats were delicious though and added extra layers of flavor to the pizza.
The pizza crust is quite thin and crispy. It has a really wonderful chew that reminded me of Napizza in Little Italy, but a little thinner. There’s a nice char on the bottom which I loved and I am happy to report that the crust was probably my favorite part of the pizza. I dislike soft crust pizzas so this was a very ideal crust for me and my love of crunchy things. It’s crisp, crunchy, but also chewy and has a great overall texture and mouthfeel. We’ll definitely be back to explore more of the menu (I spied lasagna which I really, really want to try)!
at The Headquarters
789 W Harbor Dr.
San Diego, CA 92101