Proclaimed by Michael Bauer of the Chronicle as the best pizza in the bay, visited by Tyra Banks and overflown with customers every night of the week. The unmark postcard-esque storefront at the corner of a alleyway is visible from the Glen Park Bart station.
As I make my way to the counter in the back to write my name on the wait list clipboard, I'm surrounded by a rouge wall with life size black and white pictures of an old Italian family. Freshly cut pink blushed flowers (please help me with the name of the flowers) is litter around the restaurant.
My wait on a Friday night at 9 pm was 30 mins, I parked my behind on one of the beaches outside the window with a tiny inscription of the word "Gialina" and wait, and wait in the cool breeze and wait. I was excited when my face reclaimed its warm as I stepped into the restaurant.
I excitedly started with the $6 Eggplant Capanota with fresh Belfiore mozzarella, the dish was topped off with a few sprigs of arugala. The eggplant was cooked down with a texture of cooked mushrooms, seasoned with herbs, salt, pepper, olive oil and diced bell peppers for crunch. The dish is fantastically addicting, I'm going to try to recreate the dish at home.
We ordered two pies, the very popular $15 Atomica: tomato sauce, mushrooms, mozzarella, spicy chilies & red onions. Before I start talking about the toppings it is really about the crust. The crust is crispy, thin but sturdy enough to hold the toppings without flopping around. I usually trash the crust because I hate filling up on bland dough but I ate it all at Gialina. I even ate my friend's crust because he was trying to cut down his carbs. *rolls eye*
The other pie is the Potato with applewood smoked bacon, red onions, rosemary and gorgonzola. The cheese's presence is felt in every bite with translucent thin potato slices and the smokey bacon whiffs up the nose. The back of the pizza is evenly baked and colored.
The pies are served with freshly grated parmesan and some crushed red pepper flakes. The take-out business at Gialina is a restauranteur's dream, non-stop people coming through the doors taking away duel boxes of the enticing pies.
I wanted something sweet to end the night and the selection of desserts included, Italian ice, bi-rite ice cream, fruit crisp and affogato. I ordered the $7 blackberry and peach crisp with vanilla ice cream. The fruits were baked but still retain the freshness, very sour and contrast of icy sweetness from the ice cream.
Gialina is on the Chronicle's 2009 Top 100 Restaurants in the Bay Area. My personal preference of pizza is Pizzeria Picco, Gialina, Delfina; again, this is my personal preference as I haven't tried Tony's, Pizzetta 211 or Flour + Water yet.
2842 Diamond St
San Francisco, CA 94131
Monday, September 14, 2009
Neapolitan crust at Gialina Pizzeria
Chrysanthemum by Bonnibella is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.
Based on a work at www.bonnibella.com