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Tuesday, September 9, 2008

The Sunset Strip

There is a lot of pizza on the sunset strip.  More than I thought.  There is the NY style pizza joints like Frankie and Johnnies, and Mamma Mia’s.  Then there are more California fancy pizza type places, like Pizza Rustica.  There is another place that I just discovered, called Panini that has better pizza than all of these places.

 Then there are the bars and clubs.  These are not pizzerias and I shouldn't waste my time with them.  However I recently got some tips from different people calling out 2 places that have great pizza.  So resist I cannot and review I shall. 
These two places are Red Rocks and Rainbow Room.

So the other day I thought I’d hit both with one stone.  I ordered from Red Rocks first, but they took a half hour, so I picked up from Rainbow room first.
This is a classic Rock n Roll joint, dingy and dark, with seemingly good pizza.  I waited a few minutes for the pizza since I was a little early.  I got a regular cheese pizza, a medium for 15 dollars.  I think the large was a dollar or two more.  They also have a personal size for about 7.  I have to say I expected worse.  Being on the sunset strip this wasn't too bad.  In comparison, the personal sized pizza I got from Red Rocks was 13 dollars and less than half the size of the medium from the Rainbow.  So way over priced.  
Anyway I got my pizza from the Rainbow Room and opened it up. Woah! Take a look, it was a crazy looking pizza with raw sliced tomatoes placed on top. I could tell there was a lot of cheese on top and it was piping hot.  
So you can imagine what might happen by the time I got home.  I tried to keep the pizza level, but there was just way too much cheese, it was no use. This pizza was the messiest sloppiest thing I have ever eaten.  The cheese had all relocated, the crust was sopping wet from probably the tomatoes, and since it was thin, the center was just a sloppy mess of sauce, tomato juice and cheese.  There were parts where whole chunks of the pizza would collapse into a pile of food.
There were at least 3 pieces that could not be picked up at all.  When the top of the cheese solidified a little, I had to re cut the pieces becasue of all the cheese.  This still didn’t help picking up the slice in one piece.  It was just such a disaster, I can’t do it justice in words. 
All that being said, the crust that had not been consumed by the thick mats of cheese or become soggy with grease or tomato water, was actually a lighy airy crispy crust.  It wasn’t anything to write a blog about, but it held up in a matter of speaking.  The sauce wasn’t memorable, seemed like cheap tomato paste.  The tomatoes didn’t add anything to it, just a juicy mess.  If there had been way less cheese and the pizza could hold itself together, I would say this pizza could be an average or slightly above average pizza.  Maybe the personal size is the way to go here.  Or maybe it was an off day.  But as it stands...

Rainbow Room - 9015 Sunset Blvd
Price: $$  

Next I went down the street to Red Rocks.  The bar tender took it from a shelf where it had been sitting behind the bar.  I feared it would be cold.  I got it to the car and it looked dry and indeed cold. 
My fears were relieved when I found it was not cold at all, and actually tasted pretty good.  This was a very different pizza than the Rainbow Room.  It was a dense, dry pizza, in a good way.  There was a good amount of oil dripping from the edge.  The sauce had a creamy tomato taste that was a nice change.  The cheese did not seem 100 % mozzarella, it was very salty and had a orange hue to it from the oil.  The crust was a thicker crust than a traditional NY thin crust, but still rather thin.  It was very dense at the edges but tasty.  The salty, oily taste was good for a few slices, especially with the creamy sauce.  However, it got a little tiring after awhile and when the pizza cooled down it really lost any texture that it had.  Average- maybe slightly above if it was cheaper.  

Red Rock - 8782 Sunset blvd
Price: $$$  
Red Rock on Urbanspoon
Rainbow Bar & Grill on Urbanspoon


  1. Okay, HUGE pet peeve of mine:

    The "Rainbow Room" is a famous place in New York City which has absolutely no relation or similarity to the Rainbow Bar and Grill on Sunset. This place is like walking through a living heavy metal museum where you can interact with all of the exhibits because they still hang out there. Way cooler than that lame-ass piano bar in New York.

  2. The pizza looks delicious, the cheese melted looks extremely delicious, I think that I'm going to have pizza for lunch.

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.


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