Salvatore’s Tomato Pies

Hey Hey Hey, we are back.  Yes, it certainly has been awhile since our last post, but that is what happens when you get busy with work and moving into a new apartment.  Enough dilly-dallying, let’s jump right into the pizza place.

For this posting we decided to venture to Salvatore’s Tomato Pies, one of the places that has been our most frequent recommendation since we started this blog.  Suffice to say, Sal’s DID NOT disappoint.  Sal’s is unlike any other pizza place we have been to, mainly because of the types of pizza they offer.  Sal’s has Southwest/Mexican inspired pizza’s, which led to a truly unique culinary experience, but also created our first selection dilemma.

Unlike our typical pizza review, this blog is our first attempt at a double pizza review, that’s right, we review two pizzas.  But it’s not what you’re thinking, we didn’t actually order two pizza’s.  Sal’s gave us the ability to have a 16″ pizza done half-and-half style.  Because Sal’s menu ventures outside the realm of usual pizza topping’s, Annette and I were unable to come to an agreement on what to get.  I wanted the El Mapache Loco, which has on it; Chili aioli, Nami Moon adobo chicken, roasted onions, poblano peppers, potatoes, red pepper and queso fresco.  The possibility that this pizza was going to be spicy was something that did not jive with what Annette was looking for (she also, even after all my work slowly building up her spice tolerance, still prefers things slightly less spicy than myself).  Annette had her mind set on the Forza, which has; ‘Nduja Artisans Pepperoni, calabrese chili peppers, Farmer John’s Smoked Gouda, roasted garlic, ricotta, and tomatoes.  With us unable to come to an agreement, we decided to take up Sal’s offer and get both!  I suggested that to Annette since half the pizza was the kind of her choosing, she should write up a review on her half of the pizza.  It took a little convincing, but she agreed to do it.

WHOA! Slow down eager beaver, before we get to the pizzas, I wanna talk about our appetizer.

For starter’s we went with a fairly typical pizza place standard garlic bread.  At Sal’s however, we got a nice twist on traditional garlic bread.  Sal’s garlic bread is made with a toasted Stalzy’s Baguete, Wisconsin sweet cream butter, and an heirloom garlic confit. What separated this garlic bread from the pack is that the garlic was served on the side. By that I mean we were served toasted bread with butter and we got to spread the garlic confit to our choosing.  This subversion of the typical garlic bread experience put us in quite an excitable mood for the pizza because we now knew just what kind of treat we were in for.

Finally I can get to reviewing some damn good pizza.

Craig’s Pizza (El Mapache Loco)

As mentioned earlier, my half of the pizza was made with; Chili aioli, Nami Moon adobo chicken, roasted onions, poblano peppers, potatoes, red pepper and queso fresco.  Boy o boy, was this delicious!  I won’t waste anymore of your time, time to start reviewing.

IMG_0453
Someone’s excited 🙂

Presentation:

Overall, this pizza was just so beautiful it was almost a shame that I was going to eat it.  It was colorful, vibrant, and all the ingredients popped.  When I asked Annette, she described it as “perfect.”

🍕🍕🍕🍕🍕/5 (5/5 on Presentation)

Taste:

OMG.  This pizza had some of the most exquisite flavor layering I have ever experienced.  The underlying heat created by the peppers, Chili aioli, and adobo chicken was expertly balanced with the creamy and gentle flavor of the queso fresco.  While on most pizzas the best way to balance out heat is with vegetables, on this pizza it was the potatoes that provided a blander flavor to balance everything out.

🍕🍕🍕🍕🍕/5 (5/5 on Taste)

Cheese:

What a treat.  The queso fresco reminded me a lot of mozzarella and its taste/texture was much the same.  The queso was soft and creamy with a light flavor that helped to keep the strong heat from other ingredients at bay.  Unlike most other pizzas, this one had the queso placed around the pizza in small dollops and was not covering the entire pizza, creating a unique flavor profile since it meant every bite of cheese was partnered with different ingredients.

🍕🍕🍕🍕🍕/5 (5/5 on Cheese)

Crust:

It was a traditional style crust, but the only thing traditional about it was the name.  The crust was nice and thick around the outer ring, but much closer to a thin crust type pizza where the toppings were located.  This provided a nice crunch to accompany the soft toppings.  And the fun part was that with the leftover crust we were able to dip it into the garlic confit left over from our appetizer!

🍕🍕🍕🍕🍕/5 (5/5 on Crust)

Sauce:

Muy Buen0!  Where most pizzas tend to be overflowing with sauce, this simple Chili aioli had a nice light covering for the base and provided the strong flavor the rest of the pizza relies on.

🍕🍕🍕🍕🍕/5 (5/5 on Sauce)

So that’s if for my half of the pizza.  Let’s see what Annette thought of her half.

Annette’s Pizza (Forza)

Hi everyone! Annette here 🙂 Typically I like to leave the creative writing to Craig, but when Salvatore’s offered that we could do a half/half pizza it was hard to turn down trying two specialties. I choose to go with their Forza specialty pizza which was scattered with ‘Nduja Artisans Pepperoni, calabrese chili peppers, Farmer John’s Smoked Gouda, roasted garlic, ricotta, and tomatoes topped with fresh basil. The calabrese chili peppers scared me a little because despite Craig’s best efforts I still can’t handle a ton of spice. However, one CANNOT turn down a pizza with smoked Gouda AND ricotta cheese so with a little encouragement from Craig I gave it a go.

Presentation:

This pizza was absolutely beautiful! And I’m not just saying that because I was starving when we got it. The dollops of ricotta were nicely placed all over. The tomatoes, peppers, and fresh basil gave the pizza great color.

IMG_0451
The most beautiful pizza you could ever have.

🍕🍕🍕🍕🍕/5 (5/5 on Presentation)

Taste:

This pizza’s flavor was absolutely amazing. The spices from the pepperoni and the sliced calabrese chili peppers was perfectly balanced with the light fluffy ricotta cheese. To add onto this magnificent creation was fresh tomatoes and whole cloves of roasted garlic. I wasn’t too keen of the idea of biting into a WHOLE clove of roasted garlic. I had in my head that this would be an overbearing amount of garlic in one bite…I really should learn to trust the pizza makers. They know what they’re doing. Once again Craig convinced me to give it a try, and boy am I glad he did. The roasted garlic was soft and had flavor, but much of the flavor had seeped into the rest of the pizza. Overall this pizza tasted AMAZING!

🍕🍕🍕🍕🍕/5 (5/5 on Taste)

Cheese:

All I need to say about this pizza’s cheese is RICOTTA and Farmer John’s SMOKED GOUDA! The gouda gave the cheese lots of flavor and more of the typical cheese pizza consistency while the ricotta was dolloped around the pizza. The ricotta was light and helped balance some of the stronger/hotter flavors. The cheese is what drew me to this specialty and oh boy did it pay off.

IMG_0448
Just check out that cheese….it couldn’t get any better than that!

🍕🍕🍕🍕🍕/5 (5/5 on Cheese)

Crust:

Perfection. The outside of the crust was a little crispy, but not over done. The crust was semi-thin, but still plenty on the outside. Plus the waiter had the lovely idea to use the garlic butter compound we had with the garlic bread for the leftover crust.

🍕🍕🍕🍕🍕/5 (5/5 on Crust)

Sauce:

This pizza had a light olive oil for a sauce and for a girl who loves red sauce on pizza I didn’t miss it one bit. There was so much flavor else that red sauce would have been too much. Olive oil was the perfect touch to this flavorful pizza.

🍕🍕🍕🍕🍕/5 (5/5 on Sauce)

 

And that’s all she wrote (literally).  We hope you had as much fun reading our blog as we had eating the pizza.  This blog is already making history as our longest post (I think, I don’t know, I’m not checking word count on the others).  Going forward we are going to  try and be more timely with our reviews and get one out every 3 weeks or so, but can’t promise anything as work and life just sometimes gets in the way (as does the fact that Madison has more great places to eat besides pizza joints).

‘Til next time, thanks for reading and happy eating!

Craig and Annette

 

 

 

 

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