Sunday, March 27, 2011

Pizzeria Prima Strada - Cook St

Address: 230 Cook St
Phone: (250) 590.8595
Price: $12-14 per pizza
Notes: fancy pants pizza

Prima Strada Pizzeria (Victoria, BC)

I've been hearing good, no amaaaazing things about Prima Strada for ages now. It's been on my list to try, but my partner-in-food-and-life is technically lactose intolerant so we've held off for a while now, but we were walking the dog in Beacon Hill Park and were just too close and too hungry not to check it out.

The space surprised me - this is not your walk-in, take-out, served by a guy with pepperoni-sized zits kind of place. In fact, pretty much the opposite! This is the real thing, peeps. Giant oven built into the space, classy decor and supreme local drinks on the menu. I wasn't quite prepared in my mucky dog-walking boots and hoodie! Still, we got seated by the window so we weren't too much of an unsavoury element.

I feel like Prima Strada walks a really fine line between 'authentic' and 'pretentious.' There, I said it.  I have to say, their menu twigged one of my pet peeves... it was pretty much entirely in Italian.  As much as I understand it adds to the authenticity it really irritates me when I either have to ask the server to explain something or suck it up and order something mystery. Actually, I'm looking at the menu online, and I swear it has more translated things than I remember from the menu in the restaurant, so perhaps there are either too versions or I'm misremembering. Hmmmmmmm. The instructions on the take-away box about how to reheat did feel a little condescending, though. They kind of felt like they were saying "DO NOT MICROWAVE OUR BEAUTIFUL CREATION." Personally, I like my leftover pizza like I like my leftover Chinese: cold.

One of my pet peeves is when servers decide who is "in charge" at the table and there after ignore the other person. I can see why it might have looked like a date and he maybe assumed I was not paying when my partner-in-food-and-life ordered drinks for both of us because I am currently broke.  I also probably didn't endear myself with my review of the anchovies (see below) but still,  it would be nice to be included on the question of "how is everything?" when our server came around to the table half way through. I was clearly not.

I have to confess to not being overly impressed, which makes me kind of sad. I will try again - it was really quite good, but I had had it built up so high by others that I think it would be really hard to live up to. Plus, I was already having a carb crash from earlier in the day, so pizza probably wasn't really what I should have been going for.

The crust was amazing, though! Thin and crunchy and slightly bubbly-burn on the edges. Mmmmm! Thin crust is my new favourite.

My PIFAL ordered the anchovie pizza.  I tried a bite, but it only reinforced my feeling that seafood and pizza should never, ever go together. I feel a little bad because I didn't keep the "that's DISGUSTING" any quieter. Luckily, the place was pretty much deserted by that point! Clearly this is personal preference, because my PIFAL loved it.

I asked the server which was better, the house-made fennel sausage & red pepper pizza, or the mushroom and he directed me towards the sausage. In retrospect I think I would have preferred the other, or one of their sliced meat pizzas... I'm just fussy, though. It was good it just wasn't as earth shattering as I was hoping!


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