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Food

60+ Pizzas @ Il Focolaio

Posted by Kim / December 10, 2007

20071210_foco6.jpgWhen in search for a quick and affordable meal downtown, I do have my top 10 downtown eats, and I visit them pretty frequently. But this past week, I was looking to try something new, so I tried out the pizza at Il Focolaio in Phillips-Square. It won’t make it onto my top 10 list, but If I worked downtown and had to constantly eat out, this would definitely be on the list of options, as it was definitely a fast, easy and mostly tasty way to spend $11.

With about sixty variations on the pizza pie, you’ll likely spend more time reading the menu than waiting for your food. There are lots of the usual pizza pies – Hawaiian, vegetarian, all-dressed, etc. But there were also many novel ones, including a blue cheese Hawaiian, one with snails and another with salmon. For experimentation’s sake, we ordered two rather run-of-the-mill pies, and two that seemed to test the borders of pizza-making a little more.

20071210_foco7.jpgWe were served within eight minutes of ordering (so really, a great option for downtown lunching). Baked in a wood-burning oven at the back of the restaurant, these pizzas are prepared on a thin crust that’s a little burnt around the edges and have the perfect compromise between the crispy crust and the doughy crust. The “normal” pizzas were a bit lackluster. The vegetarian was piled high with grilled vegetables, but they seemed a little waterlogged to me, and there wasn’t enough cheese or sauce on the pie to strike a perfect balance with all those toppings. The pepperoni with fresh tomatoes and zucchini was simply…nice. A good combo between the saltiness of the meat and the fresh tomatoes, and enough cheese to go around. The sauce was used sparingly, but it’s not a fantastic sauce, so it’s just as well.
20071210_foco1.jpgMore interesting was the blue cheese pizza, a pizza with slice of Capocolli and mushrooms, covered with mozzarella and blue cheese. The pizza could’ve used a bit more blue cheese, but on a whole, it was an fun taste combo and I appreciated the novelty. My favourite pizza of the evening as “La Bomba,” a pie covered with a paste of hot peppers, carrots, mushrooms, artichokes, eggplants and olives, then topped with cheese and black olives. It was decently spicy, and the combo of flavours in the paste matched the cheese.

20071210_foco5.jpgThe pizzas at Il Focolaio, for me, aren’t the best the city has to offer. However, they do their pizza just fine, and all the variations they offer makes the place a worthwhile place to go with a group of friends. It’s a great lunch place, and for the money, I think it’s pretty much on par with the other restos in the area.

Il Focolaio Pizza
1223 Square-Phillips
514.879.1045

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