Delfina Demystified

An impromptu outing today led me to Delfina Pizzeria in the Mission with some kids, including C–one of my favorite people I never see since she moved to L.A. I’ve long been curious about this highly-worshiped Italian restaurant, but wood-fired pizza surrounds me in Oakland and doesn’t rile me up. Nor does it help that several other places on this street fail to live up to their hype.

When we arrived at dinnertime, the restaurant side of the establishment was packed–perhaps because it was a long weekend or most likely because it always is–so we picked up a couple pies and ate it at the very nearby (and also very packed) Delores Park.

One secret to their success is surely the location. Position yourself between a bakery, an ice creamery, and the most popular park in the city and half the work's done.

Thumbs up for the box design. "I like the size of these pizzas. They promise a very delicious product inside," is what I said when I first saw them. In retrospect I think I meant that they are very small and good things come in small packages--at least, in a fair world.

This pizza wasn't Digiorno's, but it delivered! (Har, har.) I think this was the 4 Formaggi, (14.50) with tomato, mozzarella, fontal, provolone, pecorino. What I thought were lots of onions turned out to be pieces of rendered bacon fat. And halfway through my slice, I decided it would be a larger sin not to eat all of it. I hope that's an indication of how militant my veg ways are. I hate the texture of meat and find it hard to digest, but I guess pork fat is still fair game. Anyway, the sauce was amazingly flavorful and spicy and marries well with your typical chewy crust of the wood-fired variety.

Our other pie was topped with broccoli raab, caciocavallo, mozzarella, olives, hot peppers (14.50). I loved the toppings but I'm a saucy kind of gal and this doesn't have that lycopene I crave. It's the same reason I remain oblivious to the glory of Cheeseboard (which C is obsessed with, and believes is better than Delfina). In the end, I believe pizza is pizza and I will enjoy it in all its forms as long as there's sauce. There is only so much I would regularly pay for cheese atop bread. Because the best pizza in the world is awesome and the worst pizza in the world is still pretty great. I hold this truth to be self-evident.

Check out my other blog to see some of the people we watched while eating.

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