It lures you in with the open plan view of bakers rolling and patting dough, placing it in a wood-fired oven. When you walk in you can mill about at the counters displaying the food, queueing up to place your order. Then, after collecting your order you can shuffle amongst the bodies, desperately seeking a seat. Perhaps you thought ahead and made a mate guard some stools, and then you have to tag team while they go and do that food ordering thing while yours slowly loses optimum temperature. No, it was all too stressful for me. But then, they extended next door and built what looked like a sit-down restaurant. You know, one of those places where you're seated and your order is retrieved from you. One Friday, seven sheets to the wind and in need of late-night sustenance, four of us staggered towards the bouncer, pizza in our minds. Miraculously we were let in.
Heritage tomatoes were sweet and juicy, like no tomatoes you usually get in the UK. Paired with the sweet, creamy mozzerella and drizzled with olive oil (£7.50), this was simplicity at its best. We devoured this while we waited for our pizzas.
Diavola (£9.50) was monstrously spicy, with hidden chilli slices ready to heat-bomb your face. It was addictive. We sucked air through our teeth as we attacked through the slices.
Bresaola (£10.50) was huge and generously topped with the thinly shaved cured beef, some rocket and Parmesan. The base was chewy, well charred and the tomato sauce flavoursome. This was hard to fault.
I was less impressed with our waiter's recommendation, the Valerio. Topped with mushroom, ham, mozzerella, cream and basil, this was a white pizza and it was just a bit too boring for my tastes. With a beer each we paid roughly £15 each including service. By no means the cheapest drunk food I've ever had, but it was incredibly satisfying. Stress-free dining helps.
135 Wardour Street London W1F 0UT