CHECK OTHER REVIEWS FOR THIS PLACE:
PZZA.Co: Great Food and Extravagant Dessert Pizzas
Pzza.Co: Fluffy Borders and Tasteful Heart
Pzza.Co's New Menu: Introducing New Items, Same Great Taste
Pzza.Co: My Second Visit After the Opening
Pzza, Brgr, Deli: The Co. Family Serves Great Food!
BRGR.Co started in Lebanon and found its way into the international market... The same people who brought you BRGR.Co now bring you PZZA.Co, a gourmet accessible Italian concept with a focal element being the all time favorite; Pzza! PZZA.Co is cutting its route into the Lebanese market with plans to redefine the meaning of Italian restaurants, as we know it. Serving the finest of pizzas, pastas and salads, Pzza.Co will simply put a smile on your face.
I was one of the lucky few that had the chance to try Pzza.Co before its grand opening. As a big fan of Brgr.Co and Hussein Hadid, in particular, I was intrigued to discover what this new concept has to offer. The one and only Hussein Hadid has developed a Pizza? It must be majestic... and to tell you the truth, this word is not enough to describe the flavor and experience... Gennaro Capuano, a renowned Pizzaiolo coming straight from Napoli, has been creating hundreds of thousands of pizzas since he first started this business at the age of 9. What started as a small family business grew to become something extraordinary with an expansion outside the borders of Italy. Capuano, who is visiting Lebanon for the first time, has been meticulously recruited by chef Hadid. He traveled to Italy on a hunt for the best Pizzaiolo and that's how he met Capuano before working on creating Pzza.Co concept.
Before tasting Capuano's pizza, I was curious to ask him what he thought of our local pizzas. "I'm not going to compare,” he tells me, “but here we will be creating something special," he insists. And when I asked him which was his favorite pizza, he simply answered, "the Margarita". He is Italian after all. Hussein Hadid, whom I enjoy, spending time with, is so proud of his new concept. Hadid started working as a chef back in 1995 in an Italian restaurant and ever since he wanted to revisit this cuisine in a new context. "People should be able to eat something good in 10 minutes," Hadid tells me. He is redefining the meaning of fast food, while adding a touch of luxury to every dish yet keeping them affordable. While waiting for my hosts, I stood facing the large impressive pizza oven created by Eva Szmilas, a Polish artist who worked day and night on this huge structure for a whole month to finish. More than twenty people worked day and night to finish what has become the biggest art piece found at a restaurant in Lebanon. Flames grilling in the oven are redesigned with small pieces of ceramic in mosaic waves of orange to red colors. Gennaro rolls one pizza after the other, filling each with the freshest of ingredients he has in front of him. I was watching him at work while something caught my attention. One customer ordered a half-half pizza. To separate the two sides, he grabbed a thin piece of dough and stuck it in the middle of the perfect circle. This way, tomato sauce and other ingredients used on one side will not flow onto the other.
Let's look into the little details of interior architect Gregory Gatserelia's designs:
- Black and white tiles cover the floor as well as the right side wall. Large ones to walk on and small ones to decorate the wall
- On the right is a wall covered with small tiles, the same as the ones on the floor
- A white general ambiance relaxes you and makes the place feel clean
- An open kitchen, facing the entrance, reveals all the action, where plates are prepared and served in front of all: Transparency is key
- The piece de resistance is the large big pizza oven and its flaming colorful tiles designed by Eva Szmilas, a Polish artist that was invited in here for the job
- White marble tables fill in the space, surrounded by wooden chairs
- Fine shiny cutlery by Sola, decorate all the tables, setup on recycles paper placemats as well as olive oil bottles along salt and pepper grinders
- The restaurant can host up to 36guests inside and another 50 on the terrace
- Mozzarella Specials
- Simply Classic Pizzas
- Hussein Hadid signature Pizzas
- Fresh Homemade signature pasta
- Our Risotto
- Di Pollo
- Our Vitello
- Sweet Pizzas
- Drink Up
- Wine and Proseco
Indulge in some fine Italian food:
- Crispy Fried Zucchini are served in a round bowl and enjoyed with your hands like French fries. Deep fried and covered with sea salt, they crunch before exploding their flavors under your palate. Chips that's enjoyable in every bite... All the way.
- Buffalo Mozzarella Pizza that contains fresh tomatoes, buffalo mozzarella, cherry tomatoes, garlic, fresh basil and extra virgin olive oil, is so fresh, so enjoyable and so simple. Feel the cooked tomatoes as they burst a spell of flavor on your tongue while the mozzarella floating in style caresses your palatal buds. Don't forget to take a deep breath to enjoy the fresh aromas and the intense basil smell
- The Marinara with its fresh tomato, garlic, fresh basil, oregano and extra virgin olive oil is extraordinarily tasty. A pizza with an intense strong red color that's mouthwatering and intriguing at the same time. Multiple flavors and textures combined will make you moan from joy. Bravo chef, you made my day.
- Burrata Drizzled with Truffle Oil: Creamy burrata, wild rocca, Portobello mushrooms and truffle oil. Just imagine, thin sliced mushrooms over a fresh burrata with rocket leaves on top, seasoned majestically with truffle oil. A must try
- Baby Spinach Leaves Salad with toasted pine nuts, served with balsamic vinegar is a nice change from the average lettuce salads. This salad is an enjoyable way to start your lunch. Considered a superfood as well, the best part of it is the crunchy feel of the felt from the pine nuts. A subtle and enjoyable sweet taste added by the balsamic vinegar
- Rigatoni Creamy Bolognese: Al dente cooked fingers of pasta in rich meat sauce. A fine dining plate indeed but I would adjust the quantity of salt
- Petto di Pollo con Spinache e Funghi: Seared chicken breast served with spinach and mushroom in lemon sauce. It is as good as you would expect it to be. Juicy spinach tops thin layered meat - a perfect combination in every bite
The Pzza in few lines: Perfectly rounded pizza's filled with the richest of ingredients. I looked at them as colorful pieces of edible art, where all my senses were activated the minute I laid eyes on them. I can still visualize the strong red color... simple candy to my eyes. The dough is thin, fine and light. How great it is to feel the extraordinary crust prepared with love and dedication... filled with aromas and flavors. It starts with a simple bite which takes you on a journey around Italy and its wonders. Just when you think that the experience is over, you'll reach the borders! Awesome borders... Pleasantly crunchy yet tender in the middle... you will not want to skip out on this one... A salty aftertaste will put a smile on your face. I loved the pizzas so very much that I tell you confidently to go try one of the best pizzas in Lebanon... Not to say my favorite to date.
I'm sitting in the middle of a restaurant that has not opened yet, around three dozen people who came to taste what the famous Chef Hussein Hadid has created... I couldn't just eat. I grabbed my iPad and wanted to share my feelings with you. I was overwhelmed, I was on another planet... I was smiling like a little kid that fell into a bath of chocolate. One plate after the other, aromas, textures, flavors... All were unique. With premium ingredients, Hussein Hadid turned simplicity into innovation: Pzza.Co. Is may not be a fine Italian restaurant, and its is surely not a trattoria... but Pzza.Co is a place where Italian food has been revisited, a place that offers a whole new experience in dining and a place that offers a new recipe of joy...
And Desserts... Are extraordinary:
- The Red Fruits Sorbet: Balls of sorbet ice cream served on a bed of fresh red fruits. Plunge into them but make sure to pick up some fruits along and enjoy the subtle sweetness and light feel. Succulent dessert to say the least.
- The Tempting Tiramisu deserves its name. A truly tantalizing dessert. It’s simplicity makes it great. Fresh and light with an interesting amaretto alcohol vapor that moves around your palate as you finish every bite.
- Caramel Fudge Budino: Flaked Caramel fudge pudding, dark caramel sauce, topped with Kellogg's corn flakes. Just devour… and smile
- The Chocolate looking pizza, or more specifically the Nutella pizza is simply awesome! I am not a fan of Nutella but believe me this one is different. The dough absorbs the chocolate giving it an intense sweet taste. Combined with a light taste of salt creates a one-of-a-kind flavor. Lightly crunchy dough that’s enjoyable all the way.
- Biscuit and Caramel pizza: Make sure to leave some space for dessert: This one is not to be missed. Pizza covered with crunchy biscuit and drizzled creamy caramel sauce. Just imagine the same unique dough covered with caramel sauce that melts from all sides while Speculoos biscuits add crunch, flavor and spice. Those thin, very crunchy and slightly brown biscuits blend perfectly well with the caramel adding just the right amount of sweet to the mixture.
What else can be said? This new concept just reaffirms the fact that we Lebanese are capable of introducing unique creative innovations. Pzza.Co offers great Italian food enjoyed in a perfect ambiance. What I had today was remarkable – and mark my words when I say that Pzza.Co is going to one of 2014 most talked about restaurant.