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Thursday, March 25, 2010

La Pizza Loca

Finally I made it to La Pizza Loca. I had heard the name long ago and in my opinion is probably the best name for a pizza place I've seen yet. They are few and far between, but this chain has a good 10 or so in the wide LA area. I didn't expect much going in, and I didn't get much. It is your typical fast food chain, in the same category as Domino's. The question is: is it better than Domino's.

Well I don't like Domino's so thats an easy answer. However this pizza is not that good either.
I ordered from a pick up window, a large approximately 16'' pizza for around 8 bucks and that included breadsticks. The breadsticks were exactly that, sticks of bread. Pretty much no seasoning, and get this it came with a side of ranch. Ranch ?
Obviously it uses cheap cheese, cheap flavorless sauce and cheap dough. The cheese was actually a pure white color that didn't produce any oil and didn't taste half bad, so the cheese might be better quality than I assumed. But over all the flavor was pretty bland. The sauce was very generic and really just lacked any hint of flavor, I could barely even taste that there were tomatoes. I guess the only thing I tasted was a faint hint of black pepper.
It was cooked pretty aggressively. The crust was very crispy on the bottom as well as the outer edge. The cornmeal on the bottom helped that cause. The crust was pretty dense and dry though, which is not a good thing. The pizza as a hole was pretty dry and tasteless.
That being said, I didn't feel like I would get sick after eating it, like I do with Domino's.
So there you have it.

La Pizza Loca
10731 Hawthorne Blvd. Lennox (... and many other loc.)
Price: ¢

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Monday, March 15, 2010

Brunello Trattoria

This is a slightly fancy but casual Italian Eatery in Culver City. I try to stay away from Italian restaurants but this place specializes in pizza and I had heard from many that they had high quality pizza.
I went a little crazy with the ordering, I got a large margherita which was a generous 14 inches for 12.25. Then I ordered a pizza that caught my eye despite not liking half the things on the pizza. It was called Quattro Stagioni or four stages or tastes. This was also 14 inches for 13.50. So needless to say it was too much pizza for one person.
The 4 tastes was interesting. It was split into 4 quadrants separated by a single strand of pasta. Each with a different combination of tastes. One of which was just plain cheese which I already had.
The second was a combination of whole cloves of cooked garlic, black olives and capers, with tomato sauce and oregano. I don't care for black olives but this was a pretty good combo, even though I took most of the olives off.
The 3rd was a prosciutto and mushroom combo with tomato and mozzarella. Again I am not a fan of mushrooms but it would have been a good combo as well.

Last was a piled high quadrant of artichokes and eggplant w/ tomato sauce and mozz. This one I at all of.
So why I ordered this I dont know, I am a simple guy who likes simple everyday toppings if I get toppings at all. Though it was all pretty good, very filling and heavy. The ingredients were all fresh and prepared well with generous amounts but not over doing it. They were all cooked with the pizza mixed in with each other, the tomato sauce and the cheese. I like the prosciutto the best, it was juicy slices of cooked meat under neath melted mozz.
On with the cheese, the basis of my review.

It looks great as most pizza does and it didn't let me down too much. There were 2 different styles of cheese, one was a fresher mozz cut in chunks, and the other was a shredded mozz that possibly wasn't as fresh and had a little bit of oil seeping through. This is the first pizza I've seen that put cheese on both ways. The sauce was a light simple sweet sauce only lightly spiced. There were whole leaves of basil hidden within the cheese as well. The crust was thick and doughy, but had a good tough texture and crispy outside to it. It was cooked really well and kept the crust at its best potential. Though a little too thick for me. Especially the outer ring of dough which was just too much to eat. I couldn't enjoy as much of the sauce and cheese and toppings that I wanted to. The pizza as a whole was a little dry as well. The ratio of cheese to sauce was good but the thicker crust was too much for the light sauce. The cooler the pizza got the dryer and harder to eat the pizza became. A little more sauce would have been better but I think the main problem was just the height of the bottom crust.
I quality pizza but not quite my style and not as good as I expected.

Brunello Trattoria
6001 Washington Blvd Culver City 90232
310 280 3856
Price: $
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Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Valentino's Pizza

This is a small little local place that isn't too far from the beach but not that close either. The area around isn't too exciting. A lot of Domino's, Subways, and McDonalds. So it seems that this is the only place around that's not a nationwide chain. I am sure there are other though, closer toward the beach no doubt, I will find them.

This is a family run business, the guy is from brooklyn I believe so he at least knows what good pizza should taste like.
If this is the only place you have, you are lucky. In an area where you can't imagine finding anything half way decent is a pizza place that is pretty legit. I ordered a large cheese, 16 inches. It was pretty reasonably priced.
Sorry the picture isn't too appetizing but I assure you it tastes good.
The crust was a great thin and crispy crust, that was chewy and light. The cheese was put on pretty heavy. It was a decent cheese but really to much for my tastes. People love their cheese though. The problem with the heavy cheese is that it smothers the taste of the sauce. I think I liked the sauce. It was light in flavor with a strong and pure tomato taste. It was on the sweet side. There was then a handfull of spices thrown on top for a little extra zing, rather than mixed with the sauce. Mainly oregano.
So again the flavor was pretty good but, but didn't come through like I wanted it to, with all the cheese. The crust was well cooked, fresh and light, so that goes a long way.
Very decent pie.

Along with Taste Chicago, Valentino's is the only other place I have found with a heart shaped pizza.

975 N Aviation Blvd. Manhattan Beach 90266
(310) 318-5959
150 S. Sepulveda Blvd El Segundo 90245
(310) 426-9494
Price: $

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