Pi, Dublin: Certainly not a half good pizza
Do you remember the time when the only pizza you could get in Dublin (and several European cities) was Dominos, Pizza Hut and the frozen ones from the supermarket? This seems like a long, long time ago. Dublin has upped its game tremendously in the past few years, and while there are still many to try on my bucket list, I know quite a few places to get a great pizza in Dublin, such as Manifesto, Fallon & Byrne in Rathmines or the Dublin Pizza Company. The promising Rogue, which we loved so much last summer, is yet to come back (although it seems to have made a quick reappearance this spring) but in the meantime, Dublin has greeted an exciting new opening in the city centre.
On the already buzzing George’s Street, a few steps down from the new Five Guys, Pi opened its doors a few weeks ago and the reports I got from the 'gram were adamant: this place was a must-try.
I used the great excuse to have a pizza-loving friend visiting from Paris to schedule a dinner there. The venue is rather small and the star of the show, aka the wood fired oven, takes centre stage, which is always a good sign. The team, starting with the chef Reg White were hard at work when we walked in at 8:30pm on a Wednesday evening.
We got seated at the back, and were given the concise and mouthwatering menu. I always feel like a Margarita is the alpha and omega when it comes to pizza, as you can’t hide behind the toppings to cover up a bad dough or a mediocre tomato sauce. The Margarita is the ultimate test - and also happens to be my favourite pizza anyway.
Ordering the Margarita was a no-brainer, and we also got the Salumi, with buffalo mozzarella, rocket, prosciutto and semi sundried tomatoes, as well as the Funghi, a white pizza topped with parmesan, fontina cheese, spinach, sage cream and "Hen of the Wooks" maitake mushrooms.
When our pizzas arrived, we could only be pleased by the look of them. A thick, doughy and slightly burnt edge, a thin crust and the right amount of topping came alongside a gorgeous smell.
It was a love at first sight with this Margarita. The sharp tomato sauce was balanced out by the creaminess of the Toonsbridge fior di latte mozzarella, while the crust boasted loads of flavours and was perfectly cooked. The other numbers didn’t disappoint either, yet the Funghi one particularly impressed us, with the fontina giving a rich cheesy taste, the mushrooms forgetting to be chewy and instead giving plenty of depth to the pizza. At this stage, we had already updated our ranking of the best pizzas in Dublin, and were complimenting ourselves for having the great idea to have moved closer to the city centre recently.
The dessert menu comprises only two items, a chocolate budino with Maldon salt and a vanilla ice cream - which I ordered to please my companions of the night, both excited by what probably stands as the least exciting dessert from my point of view.
Aren't I glad that I listened to them? This vanilla ice cream came with a pinch of sea salt and a drizzle of olive oil and we just couldn't believe how these toppings gave a whole new dimension to this simple dessert. The chocolate cream was more intense in flavour and not any less tasty than the ice cream. For €3,50 and €4,50 respectively, these two desserts are absolute hits.
While the Margarita is priced €11,50, the Salumi set us back €15 and the Funghi €16, which is a bit above average. The Pi team said on Instagram that the mushrooms they use cost a fortune, explaining the higher price point of the pizza - and the exquisite taste... We also enjoyed the friendly service and overall were absolutely delighted with our dinner in this new gem of a pizzeria.