chicks and love pizza in soma....let's see if we like each other first
Normally, if I find myself in the area near Rainbow Grocery, I'm there to hit up the SOMA StrEat Food Park. This time however, I've come specifically to try out a tiny new spot that took over the gated-in outdoor area beside Rainbow that had their cafe for awhile. It's called Chicks and Love Pizza Patio. The "chicks" are Vanda and Joe and they've been serving up handcrafted pizza's at farmer's markets in Walnut Creek and Danville for a bit. Now they have brought (brung? broughted? bringith?) to this corner spot under the freeway.
It's a rectangular spot surrounded by fencing with a handful of picnic tables outside and a cooking shack where you place your order. There aren't many pizza options to choose from on the menu, though it seems you could mix and match toppings, to a point. I figured I'd go with the Farm Fresh, since they said it is their signature pizza.
A house made flatbread pizza with olive oil, parmesan, mozzarella cheese, Aidell's chicken apple sausage, a sous vide egg, garlic chives, Himalayan pink sea salt, pepper and for fun I had them toss on some spinach to get my greens for the day. It was $12 for the pizza plus $1 for the spinach. I guess for a single serve pizza in SF, that is about average. All are baked to order and when it came, it wasn't as big as I thought (hoped) it would be.
Focusing on the toppings, I felt they came off a little slim. There isn't that much cheese, the sausage is crumbled up in small bits you can barely taste and the yolked up soft boiled egg is spread over the whole thing making it the overwhelming flavor here. Odd I know, but that is all I was getting--I know the other stuff was on there, they just didn't really stand out enough to taste them. I ended up doing the hot pepper flakes to flavor it up and cut some of the egg-ness.
When you get down to the crust, well, this is actually where the pizza shines. If ever the crust were the thing, it most definitely is here. It's sort of a mix of whole wheat and white with honey from bees they evidently cultivate themselves. The honey doesn't add over-powering sweetness or anything, it just gives it a nice hint. And maybe it was just my imagination, but I got a little buttery-ness in there too and we know I'm a fan of that. It is also of the thin and baked up crispy kind which I really like. I think I would have been very happy with just some cooked up flatbread drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with salt.
But in the interest of "cough, cough" research, they offer a take and bake option. I figured why not get one and see how it cooks up at home as opposed to eat in. For that, I got the Spinach Mushroom for $11 and paid the $2 upcharge for some Hobb's pepperoni.
It's spinach, cremini mushrooms, pepperoni, olive oil, parmesan, mozzarella cheese, minced garlic, white truffle oil, garlic chives, more Himalayan pink sea salt and pepper. This is the uncooked version which they actually put together and packaged for me while I waited. It held up pretty well till I got back home to cook it up for dinner.
And here it is freshly baked from the oven. Doesn't look too different, but it did have more flavor than the previous one. Part of that was the earthiness of the shrooms which the truffle oil helped kick up and the spicy pepperoni. Though again, they were kind of skimpy on the cheese, it is one of the reason we love it so much. The ooey, gooey, stringy, buttery, greasy cheese is what our stomachs clamor for! But the crust still held up and was just as good as before. It cooks up to that snappy thin crispness which makes it stand out from other doughs.
As far as pizzas in this town go, it's okay. Most of it has to do with toppings and cost for what you get, causes me to waver on it when compared to others, even at the StrEat Food Park across the street from them. But I would highly recommend at least trying their crust. Fortunately for everyone, you can get just the pre-made crust in a 2-pack for $10. I actually think that is totally worth it in this case. It allows you to make your own at home, safe in the knowledge you have a great crust base to start with. JUST DON'T BURN IT! You'll be able to add all the cheese and butter to your hearts content! Okay, that's what I would do and while it might not make my heart anything but clogged, it will make my stomach happy. It's all about priorities people.