Thursday, October 06, 2011

Settebello: One more step to a better Pasadena

Diavola pizza features peppered salami
Settebello Pizzeria Napoletana is the latest entry in the ongoing push for Pasadena not to suck so badly, foodwise, and it's a worthy attempt. Like nearly everything else along Colorado, there's a whiff of the corporate about Settebello, which has two locations in Las Vegas and Salt Lake City, a slick website and servers who earnestly explain that the pizzas are sized individually and served unsliced.
The former Famima market has been stripped of its Pockys and classed up with a large marble bar, long wooden tables and lots of golden lights; on a Friday night it fills up fast with couples and families with strollers. But it's a bit more sophisticated than a neighborhood pizza joint, with Italian cocktails and a menu mostly centered on vera pizza Napoletana. A nearly-breadless panzanella salad with arugula and croutons is pleasant but far from authentic -- it's probably just as well given the dough that follows. There's also an antipasto plate and several other salads, and a decent selection of Italian wines and beers.

Pizzas that bear that label must be made by trained pizzaiolos, hand rolled and cooked in a wood-burning oven. The result is a fairly thin crust with nice bits of char, a slightly soggy center and a goodly amount of chew. The menu at the Pasadena location is slightly different from the one on the website -- there's no Quattro Stagioni variety, and several of the toppings in Pasadena seem to include mascarpone or panna. Is this traditional in Italy? The extra creaminess didn't add much to the pizza -- I preferred the Diavola, in which the cleaner flavors seemed to cohere into a lightly spicy and satisfying whole. In general, the topping selection seemed kind of middle-of-the-road, and I'd agree with Sinosoul that the toppings might not be of the highest quality -- but priced fairly at about $13 each.
The verdict: Settebello is definitely worth a try for its nicely chewy crust if you're in the Pasadena area to go to Vroman's or the Playhouse theaters. But I'd stick with Mother Dough, despite its lengthy wait, for a little more character.
Settebello Pizzeria
625 E Colorado
(626) 765-9550

Settebello on Urbanspoon

1 comment:

Jennifer said...

My husband and I stopped by this place on our way to Tender Greens this weekend (mmm mmm Tender Greens, can't get enough). The place seemed to have great ambiance. Based on your review I may go back...And I want to try this Mother Dough you speak of! Off to Google it right now!