I have anxiously been awaiting the opening of Spike Mendelsohn's (he of Top Chef fame) new pizza place, We, The Pizza. I haven't really frequented his other venture, Good Stuff Eatery, because I'm a veg-head (as Gary calls me) and thus, do not spend a lot of time in burger joints. But pizza? That's something I can get behind.
The restaurant finally opened up a few weeks ago. Since Gary has been quite busy at work, I decided to go on a weekday with Steph (who I dine with frequently and who has made several appearances on this blog) and baby Molly.
Well, holy hell. There were quite a few people in line when we arrived at 11:30 AM. And by "quite a few" I mean pretty much every person within a 2 mile radius (rough estimate) had decided to grab a slice. The line snaked through the restaurant about 32 times (again, rough estimate) and was out the door. So, just a word to the wise, do not try to navigate this ridiculous line with a stroller. I'm just saying.
But, really, it wasn't that bad because the line moved along pretty quickly. And, I have a very cute baby, so people were forgiving when I rolled over their toes.
When I heard about this restaurant, I was expecting a sit-down place with table service. Instead, you order your slice and they give you one of those buzzer thingies that go off when your food's ready, and they you can go find a seat in the dining room or outside. Makes total sense, really-- with the large lunchtime crowd in the Capitol Hill area, most people don't have time to hang out and have a sit-down meal.
The pizza is New York style, with a thick crust that's much more bready than the neopolitan style you tend to see at DC pizzerias. There's plenty of inventive pies on the menu, as well as your usual basic cheese and pepperoni. They also have this really cool soda fountain, where you order a soda with some whackadoodle name (like "I've gotta orange crush on you") and they crush up the fruit and pour soda water over it right there.
I got a simple cheese slice-- my fave-- and Steph got potato with pancetta. We split a spinach and artichoke slice. We also each got a whackadoodle soda. Molly just hung out in her stroller, oblivious to the broken toes she was leaving in her wake.
Steph and I found a seat outside and waited for the buzzer thingies to buzz. Wasn't too long before our pizza was ready, and then it was game on. I had to somehow navigate through the 32 lines of people, get our pizza and sodas, and navigate out without knocking anyone over, or worse, dropping our food. Remember that old commercial with OJ Simpson running through the airport? It kind of felt like that. Except without the creepy implications that commercial has in retrospect.
The pizza itself was good; little droop, good ingredients. The crust was a bit to bready for my taste, but that's just a preference. Our complaint was that it was rather cold. The pizzas are all set out by the register so you can see them before you choose, which is nice, but they would do well to heat the slices up a bit before serving. Perhaps this is just an issue when they are really busy, I don't know. I absolutely loved the sodas. They were delicious! In fact, I wanted to go back for another one but I didn't feel like standing in line again.
So last night, we went to a party for some friends of ours at Top of the Hill, right down the street from We, The Pizza. As Gary and I walked by, we thought... oh my goodness, I could use some pizza right now. But since we were a bit late, we decided to grab a slice on our way home.
As we were saying our goodbyes, one story turned into another story, turning into "remember that time in Vegas when you were carrying the case of Bud Lime down the street when..." into "remember that time you we saw that tightrope walking guy in Stanton Park and then..." into we didn't end up leaving the party until close to 11:30 PM. Bad news, pizza lovers-- We, the Pizza closes at 11 PM. We found this out because as Gary and I walked up to the restaurant, the man himself, Chef Spike, was turning hungry revelers away at the door. What's up Spike? It's the weekend! Give us a couple more hours of pizza love!
Therefore, I will have to wait to give my rating until Gary can have a slice with me. Stay tuned pizza fans!