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Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Sylvio's, Scottsville Road

Sylvio's is on Scottsville Road, about a quarter mile south of Jefferson Road. It shares a building, and in fact is physically connected to, the Lex South Sports Bar. (The bar could probably drop the “South” modifier, as the original Lex bar on Lexington Avenue is now operating under a different name.)
I stopped around lunchtime for a “monster” slice, which lived up to its name. It was truly enormous, and required two hands to eat it. I’d guess it measured a good foot along the sides.
Interestingly, my pepperoni slice was taken from a pizza that had apparently been par-baked with just cheese, to which some pepperoni slices were added, and the whole thing was put back into the oven for several minutes to finish baking.
Sylvio’s menu proclaims that they offer “brick oven pizza,” and perhaps they do use a brick oven - I should start paying more attention to the ovens at these places - but if so, they don’t seem to be taking full advantage of it. Upon emerging, my slice was still quite pale underneath, and seemed a bit underdone to me. I suppose I should’ve given it a look and asked for it to be put back into the oven, so I’ll take some of the blame there. It had also been screen baked, though, which again kind of defeats the purpose of using a brick oven, and it had a doughy, rather than bready, aroma.
The crust was fairly thin, or at least it seemed thin relative to its overall size.The lip, though, did have some crispness and breadiness. Overall, it was like slightly undercooked, but good, bread dough.
The crust was topped with a thick, concentrated, slightly sweet/herbal sauce. It was on the cheesy side, but the cheese really took a back seat here to the sauce, as well as to the cup and char pepperoni, which had good flavor. The pepperoni was nicely crisped along the edges but not burnt, though it did add a lot of grease to the slice.
Sylvio’s has a handful of specialty pizzas on the menu, and any pizza can be ordered thick or thin as you prefer. They also have “jumbo” wings (and quite a few wing sauces, including the curiously named “Boom Boom” sauce), hot and cold subs, burgers, hots, “plates,” Italian and seafood dinners, “Italian style” tripe soup, chili, and various munchies. There’s a dessert case as well, although it was empty on my visit.
Sylvio’s is also clearly proud of its homemade Italian sausage. Had I spotted that sooner I would’ve asked for that on my pizza instead of the pepperoni, not that I’m complaining about the latter.
There are a couple of tall tables inside, and some outdoor seating as well. And as I mentioned, the pizzeria is connected by an interior door to the bar next door, and I presume that it’s OK to take your food into the bar. The service was friendly, if a bit automatic; every request I made was met with a reflexive “you got it.”
This was, on the whole, some pretty good pizza, particularly for a “monster” slice, which all too often are more about quantity than quality. But it had its shortcomings, too, particularly its lack of doneness. Again, I could certainly have asked that it be baked longer, but even if I had, I don’t think this would’ve had a truly great crust. All in all, then, this was not world-class pizza, but it certainly wasn’t bad, and I’ll give it a B-.
Sylvio’s Pizza and Catering, 1761 Scottsville Rd. 436-6390
Mon. - Sat. 10 a.m. - midnight, Sun. noon - 10 p.m.

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