Alibi V.28 No.27 • July 4-10, 2019 

Restaurant Review

A Slice of Hope

Restoration Pizza makes an impact in the community

pizza
My mouth started watering just remembering eating here.
Eric Williams Photography

Have you ever stopped to think about how many things are just a combination of wheat and dairy? For example, what is macaroni and cheese if not merely wheat and dairy? What about grilled cheese? Mozzarella sticks? There are hundreds of comfort foods that work off this combination, yet for some reason, one stands head and shoulders above the rest. The great equalizer—pizza—manages to be immensely diverse in its construction and composition, taking the tried and true wheat and cheese formula and making something amazing out of it. With marinara and toppings, this bread and cheese combination shuts out its peers, as the ultimate go-to for any laidback gathering meal.

There has never (and probably will never be) a shortage of pizza places to choose from. But variety is important; just ask any New Yorker where the best pizza is, and you’ll probably never hear the same answer twice. Pizza is subjective. Some love a thin and crispy crust; others love something more substantial and heavier. Is the sauce too spicy? Not spicy enough? How gooey is the cheese? This place doesn’t even offer pineapple on pizza? Why are we even here then?! The point is that pizza is pizza, but good pizza is near unquantifiable, because what makes a good pie is in the eye of the beholder.

I mention this so I can avoid complaints from people who don’t feel like their standard for good pizza has been met can understand that I also don’t care. After months of hearing only good things, I decided to vist Restoration Pizza to find out for myself what all the hype was about. For the record, there is damn near no style of pizza that I don’t like, because let’s be real: All of it is amazing. Restoration Pizza is located at 5161 Lang Ave. NE Ste. A, near Paseo and the freeway. For someone who spends most of their time Downtown, it’s certainly a drive to get there. But I have to say that the drive is totally worth it.

Restoration Pizza stood out to me as a place worth checking out, not just because it’s a new Bosque Brewing Co. venture, but because of their mission to employ people of differing abilities. What this means is they work with Adelante Development Center and ARCA, along with other agencies, to hire people who don’t normally have an opportunity to be employed in jobs like these. This is a restaurant that doesn’t just offer good food and drink, but also employment and opportunity to those who have previously been denied a chance at a normal job. Not only that, but they offer their employees competitive pay and job growth, which allows them to succeed in new ways and have more genuine career options. That alone is worth your attention.

Now for the food. Bosque Brewing Co. has always succeeded in creating amazing food to pair with their beer, and Restoration Pizza continues that trend. I started off with the Antipasti Skewers ($9). As the grandson of an Italian grandmother, I should have been prepared for the onslaught of food that this would entail. These three skewers were packed full of olives, capicola, mozzarella, tomatoes, roasted artichoke hearts and basil, finished off with a balsamic reduction. This was literally an entire meal. I barely finished one skewer on my own before I had to call it quits to stand a chance at eating anything else. The olives were huge and crisp, the artichoke hearts were packed with flavor, the tomatoes were fresh and the mozzarella was plump and flavorful. I highly recommend this if you want something excessively Italian in your stomach.

For drinks, I snagged their A-Ha-inspired “Take On Mead,” which I expected to take me to a hand-drawn fight scene in Valhalla, though it didn’t, but that was the only bad thing about this drink. Let’s be honest, how often do you get to have mead? Made with local honey, it’s just sweet enough to tantalize your tongue without leaving an overpowering taste behind.

I also dove in on the Pretzel Bites with House-made Beer Queso ($7.25). There’s not a ton to say about these, other than the fact that they were perfectly baked, ridiculously soft on the inside with a nice crust on the outside. The cheese paired perfectly with them and was totally worth that extra stomach space I was saving for pizza.

For pizza, there are more choices in terms of toppings and sizes than you can shake a stick at. They offer gluten-free crusts, as well as a CauliPower crust, so dietary restrictions are supported here. I opted for the simple traditional go-to, a large pepperoni. At $14.50 for a 16-inch single-topping pizza, the price fit. The crust is solid, with enough crunch to feel sturdy, but the dough above still has some softness to it. The sauce was rich and flavorful, while the cheese was gooey and stretchy. The pepperoni was great, covering the face of the pie sufficiently and allowing me to get a piece in every bite. From the first bite, you can tell that these are all high quality ingredients that come together to create something truly worth devouring.

Restoration Pizza is well worth your time. From their amazing mission to their high-end approach to casual dining to their amazing beer list, there’s not a part of this business that doesn’t work. Everyone has their own favorite pizza, and to be entirely honest, Restoration Pizza deserves a shot at that title with everyone.

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5161 Lang Ave NE Suite A
582-2720
https://www.restorationpizza.com/

Hours: Mon-Wed: 11am-10pm Thu-Sat: 11am-11pm Sun: Noon-10pm
Vibe: Open, friendly, comfortable.
Alibi Recommends: Appetizers are amazing, and so is the pizza.