(See the July 25, 2014, Review here.)
For a long time – over a year – whenever I went to Pupatella, both Enzo and Anastasiya were both there, every single time without exception. Then, life for them progressed, they had a baby, and word of the quality had spread enough so that the business grew substantially.
Now, it’s almost the exact opposite – Out of the past, say, ten visits, I’ve seen neither at the restaurant probably eight times.
But how has the pizza been?
First of all, I *always* take advantage of the “$10 off” any bottle of wine with purchase of two pizzas offer – if I’m there alone, I’ll invariably buy a second pizza to go, just so I can get a $30 bottle of Sauvignon Blanc or Vermentino for $20 – I’ll have a couple glasses there, and take the rest home. It’s a really good deal on some very drinkable wines, and one which you should be enjoying.
A few days ago, I ordered four pizzas, and I’d say they were pretty representative of my recent experiences there. They’re slightly different than they used to be – not better, not worse, but different. The crust is perhaps a millimeter (but only a millimeter) thicker, and the crust coming out of the oven is slightly more soft than it used to be (but only slightly). The flavors in the dough are still right there, and the toppings – which have never been the same quality as what you’d get at 2 Amys, for example, are about the same. In other words, the pizzas have been pretty consistent over the years, and are among the best in the area if not still *the* best.
But I’ve developed what is nearly a fetish for their Mimosa ($12): Italian cream, roasted corn, prosciutto cotto, and fresh mozzarella. And on this recent visit, I ordered two of them – that’s how much I like them. In fact, I think I’ve gotten the Mimosa on each of my last several visits. This time, I also got two red pizzas (with San Marzano tomato sauce) to go along with my two white pizzas: a Ham and Mushroom ($11), with prosciutto cotto, sautéed mushrooms, and fresh mozzarella, and for the first time ever, a Pepperoni Pizza ($10.50) with tomato sauce, fresh mozzarella, and beef pepperoni. For “personal-sized” pizzas, these are technically 11 inches, but they seem slightly larger, and the four pieces they’re cut into are enough for a meal unless I’m really hungry – there are always leftovers for the next day, and I’m still trying to master the art of reheating these. Even if I put them into a pre-heated oven, directly on the rack, the crust comes out softer than I’d like – if anyone has any suggestions, I’m all ears.
Pupatella remains in Italic in the Dining Guide (as it always has been), remains the top-ranked restaurant in Ballston, and remains one of the best, if not *the* best, pizza in the DC area.