La Piazza Al Forno
Address: 5803 W Glendale Ave, Glendale, AZ 85301
Phone: (623) 847-3301
Known For: Pizza
What I had: Mediterranean Pizza (pesto sauce, mozzarella, sun-dried tomato and feta)
Rating: 6 out of 10
La Piazza Al Forno has been featured on all sorts of lists and even on Diners, Drive-ins & Dives for their pies, and they’ll make sure you know it. They’ve got signs all over the place and their website is filled with praise by others. Now this is not always a bad thing…especially when a these accolades are proven correct.
Now I’ve been wanting to find that piece of pizza that one continues to talk about well after eating it. I know there are a slew of places on the east coast that offer this but I’ve yet to find something like that in the west. Sadly my search continues.
I was sorely disappointed by La Pizza Al Forno. For starters, there was a large line and the service was very slow. I know this is because of their popularity but you’d think that it would be due deserved and hence worth these fallbacks. There hours are a bit strange too. I’d imagine that if they were doing such good business that they’d want to be open as much as possible. They close daily from 3PM-5PM and close for the night at 8:30PM. They are also closed Sundays and Mondays. To further add to it, I was not given silverware nor napkins, ever, and my water was not refilled once. Every request seemed to be a problem and my waitress was extremely hard find.
Getting to the pizza…it was just alright but nowhere near what it is lauded to be. They use a wood-fire brick oven and you’d assume their crust to be one of the best features but it was slightly…I won’t say undercooked, but not crispy enough. I had the Mediterranean which is a creamy pesto sauce, mozzarella, sun dried tomatoes and feta cheese. I was debating between this and the classic Margarhetta but the waitress talked me out of it. She adamantly stated that it was better. I wish I had gotten the latter. The pizza was just underwhelming, nothing stood out and the flavors didn’t pop at all, nothing really hit me and it was all sort of bland. You’d expect pesto to have a kick but it was as if it had almost no garlic. The cheese was generic tasting mozzarella (though I hear its not) and the feta didn’t have a bite either. Even the sun dried tomatoes umph and I’m a huge fan of sun dried tomatoes.
I hate to be a downer but it was just okay, and when you claim to be one of the best, being just okay is actually a downfall. I would not go here again. Unfortunately I think that they have fallen victim to their success. It just felt as if the staff weren’t working well together and the place wasn’t running smoothly. Maybe I was just there on a bad night, maybe not. They had trouble getting food out in a timely matter and pleasing the patrons. I believe that because of this they then send out less than par pizzas. There was a joint a block away that serves by the slice and I bet I would’ve been much more happy (and saved a few bucks) over there.
Aug 29, 2009 @ 17:34