Comet Ping Pong, Chevy Chase

(See the May 6, 2011 Review here.)

One of my favorite things about Comet Ping Pong is the quality of the wines available by the glass, half-carafe, and full carafe. A 2007 Chateau Jouclary Cabardès ($6) is a Grenache-driven blend that’s from the region around Carcassone, and is delightful with Comet’s Hot Wings ($6) – an appetizer that has always been good here. Served with a ranch-like dipping sauce, these are less “Buffalo wings” than they are Jamaican jerk style chicken, and if you enjoy this type of spicing, then you won’t go wrong ordering these.

I wanted to save my wine for the pizza, however, so I ordered a can of PBR ($2.50) to guide me through the second half of the spicy wings. A Jimmy ($13), made with Comet tomato sauce (made from Toigo Farm tomatoes, btw, and available for retail purchase for $8 a jar (or $5 a jar with $20 gift certificate)), mozzarella, meatballs, and parmesan, was one of the ugliest pizzas I’ve ever seen come out of this oven. Little and round, it appeared to have very little char, and no bubbles or blisters in the crust – furthermore, there appeared to be only one, perhaps two, little meatball(s), sliced and fanned out in a circular pattern in the very center of the pizza. By sight alone, I would have walked away from this pie, but on the palate, it was surprisingly pleasant – not great, mind you, but a whole lot better than it looked. Comet has had some consistency issues with its pizzas recently – not so much in terms of quality, but in terms of appearance and presentation. At some point, I hope they can steady the ship so I know what to expect when I come in here.

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