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Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Pontillo's, Mt. Hope

I've never intended to visit every location of every local pizzeria chain, but I have been slowly working my way to the various Pontillo's locations around town. I've heard time and again that different Pontillo's locations have better, or worse, or just different pizza, from others, and I pass by them often enough, and I've generally like their pizza enough, to want to try more.
Recently I stopped at the Mt. Hope Avenue Pontillo's. I got a cheese slice and a broccoli/tomato slice.
The cheese slice had a dry, firm underside that displayed some light charring. A little corn meal was visible underneath, as was a tiny bit of oven soot.
The crust was of thin to medium thickness, but this was a heavy slice. Some of the heft came from the thick, bready cornicione, but there was also a fair amount of cheese. It had migrated a bit away from one corner, due to the dough puffing up in the oven, but this slice was on the cheesy side, though not overly so. The cheese appeared to be all mozzarella, and had just slightly browned.
In contrast, the slice was relatively light on the sauce. It had been applied thinly and some of what was there had either evaporated or soaked into the top layer of the crust.
The broccoli/tomato slice was of comparable thickness, though with a cornicione that was thinner but more hollow and puffy than the cheese slice. The underside was well browned and crackly, though softer near the tip (not unusual, as whatever liquid there is on top tends to gravitate toward the center of the pie).  A little oil also seemed to have seeped in toward the middle of the pie on this one, perhaps after it was sliced, but it wasn't overly greasy.
The tomato slices were pretty flavorless, but I should've expected that. It's rare to get a fresh tomato at any sort of restaurant around here with much flavor. Your best bet is to look for smaller varieties, like plum, grape or cherry tomatoes.
The broccoli added more aroma and flavor. There wasn't a lot of it, but there was enough to notice. The cheese on this white slice was uniformly spread, and though it was a little oily on top, that's typical of a white pizza, which is often given a brushing or drizzle of oil before the toppings are applied. Even without that, melted fat that exudes from the cheese has no tomato sauce to mix with, so it's more noticeable on a white pizza.
To sum up, both slices were pretty good. The cheese slice could've used a tad more sauce, for my taste, and the tomato broccoli slice was a little on the bland side - good, but next time I'd give it a shot or two of grated Romano and red pepper flakes. Or I might go for a spinach and artichoke slice, which also looked good. These were better than average slices of pizza, and I'll give them both a B.
Pontillo's, 1687 Mount Hope Ave. 14620
(585) 442-6865
Hours: Mon. - Thu. 10 a.m. - 11 p.m., Fri. - Sat. 10 a.m. - midnight, Sun. noon -10 p.m.

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