Having already covered most of the territory, trips to the Fort Worth area lack any real new pizza promise. Recently however, I discovered that America’s construction boom is not limited to my home turf of Nashville (aka “Crane City”). On the advice of my smart “Sis-in-Law,” together with her and Mrs. Pie, we visited a new Millennial-centric development that follows the current trend of mixing retail with commercial office space and residential apartments. It also included pizza.
Our lunch this work-free Friday was at Piattello Italian Kitchen in Waterside, a new destination on the Southwest side of Fort Worth. Parking in the main lot, across from Piattello I spotted a place I will probably never visit: Blaze Pizza, the happening fix-your-own quick pizza chain that basketballer LeBron James has put a lot of his dough into.
On Sis-in-Law’s good word on Piattello, I bent my rules a little to include a place like this where pizza is somewhat of a sideline to an Italian menu. And, as I seem to do more so these days, I would be giving in to a Neapolitan style over my mission statement New York style.
Piattello (which means “little plate” in Italian) sits on the edge of a park area built for relaxation called The Grove. On this pretty fall late afternoon, the restaurant was quite un-busy, and we chose to dine al fresco on their humungous outdoor wooden patio without ever stepping inside their front door. My later investigation inside found a giant sparkling new dining room with an open view of the food preparation.
This place looked so well put together and was operated so efficiently that I was shocked to find that it was the pride and joy of experienced local Fort Worth chef, Marcus Paslay, and that there wasn’t more than one. Based on our dining experience, if that’s his future goal, with food this fabulous, it’s one he will easily accomplish. Cleverly, Piattello also opens in the morning as a coffee bar.
There were five different pies on their rotating food menu, and we forked over $16 to get the plain Margherita—just “tomato, house Mozzarella and basil.” The small-sized pie (about 10 inches) was presented to us before our meal and had a knockout visual appeal. It looked crisper than one would expect from a place like this with char marks showing up on the wide-toasted and puffed-up end crust. A dark rich-looking light splash of tomato sauce was topped with a small shred of Mozzarella that was topped off with some sprinkled Pecorino. The final touch was a healthy dose of diced basil leaves.
Piattello’s deliciously-chewy crust certainly won the prize as the best component of this overall fine-tasting pizza. Despite its look, there was however not enough crispness to it, and it did get a little soggy when I got to slice #6. Same could be said for the middle of the pie where the moisture drained and after a while was a bit to mushy to enjoy. Softness and mush aside, this was a darn good and tasty pizza with a lively flavor coming from the combination of the two cheeses and the rich gravy.
The other food we tried was also fantastic! If you visit Piattello, you would be remiss in not ordering a pizza appetizer to kick-off your meal. I say give this place a try and watch for more of these places to pop up.
PS – On your way out, I’d recommend you grab a great ice cream treat at Steel City Pops next door.
PIZZA SNOB RATING **** Near Perfection
Piattello Italian Kitchen
5924 Convair Drive #412
Forth Worth, TX 76109