Spicy Chicken Pizza at Wolfgang Puck - Costa Mesa
Before Nancy Silverton and Mario Batali made waves with Mozza and its artisanal pies, there was Wolfgang Puck and his pizzas. The Austrian didn't invent the California-style pizza but he is widely credited as the man who popularized it in the 80s. His success inspired such empires as California Pizza Kitchen. But now, with every new pizzeria doing the what’s-old-is-new thing, his kind of pizza seems as fashionable as parachute pants.
So when I went to eat at South Coast Plaza's Wolfgang Puck Bistro after all these years--the first time I’d ever done so--it felt more like visiting an distant uncle I never got to know. And it looked as though he was now well past his prime. The restaurant has now become as well-worn as a roadside diner.
But the pizza was everything I expected it be, and maybe a little more. The crust is dead flat, the same thickness and texture from the leading edge to the middle, but the topping I chose (and the one our tired-looking waitress recommended) actually tasted like what was advertised: a complete Buffalo wing appetizer. Not only was there a vinegary hot-sauce reminiscent of the last time you were at a sports bar, but also drizzles of blue cheese dressing, and pieces of celery.
The irony was thick: here was a pizza invented in California in the 80s, paying homage to an appetizer invented in New York in the 60s.
3333 Bristol St.
Costa Mesa, CA 92626
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