Claiming the city’s best pizza is a bold move, but we’re pretty confident about putting it out there. Why? Two, no, six words – sourdough starter and farm-fresh ingredients. And when we say farm fresh, we mean delivered-this-week fresh. If you haven’t been to The Pizza Collective at West Street Market yet, guys, you’re missing out.
There’s nothing pretentious about this menu. On a single page, the Collective lays out a modest trio of appetizers, seven twelve-inch pizza varieties, a few beverage options – including, of note, kava – and sources for everything on the menu. But then you start reading, and that’s when things get interesting. The options change depending on the ingredients at hand, but this week is a prime example of how creative this place gets. Patatas bravas are a mix of Yukon potatoes, capers, garlic, and Nduja-tomato ragout. The house salad features greens, cherry tomatoes, red onion, pistachios, Parmigiano Reggiano, and the house Italian vinaigrette. Pretty killer options for a pizza joint, no?
And then you browse the pizzas. This week, there’s fennel and sausage, mushroom love, a vegan special – the Meatball, ha – potato and pesto, and for the purists, good ol’ pepperoni and margherita. The ingredients are varied and unique, and the sourdough crust is truly second to none, firing up in their big, beautiful, blue-tiled Italian-made oven in just 90 seconds. One bite, and all of that artisanal texture, flavor, and nutritional value is immediately evident.
For vegan pie lovers, opt for organic Mikoyos vegan cheese. Those avoiding gluten can try the Socca crust. Something for everyone, small menu notwithstanding.
Farm to Table – For Real
That simple menu also holds information about every ingredient used to make your pie. And those ingredients are pretty awesome – and organic whenever possible. After all, there’s just no substitute for starting with quality stuff, and these folks did their homework when it came to choosing their vendors. They looked at our local foodshed and slightly beyond for the very best flours, cheeses, meats, vegetables, oils, spices, and salt, and all so your food not only tastes amazing, it’s done in a way that aligns with good stewardship of the land.
So where’s all this good stuff coming from?
Flour for the dough comes from Central Milling in Sonoma, CA, and Camas Country Grains, in Willamette Valley, OR. These mills are big on preserving American farmland and heritage grains (which means a little nutritional boost and all of that color, richness, and flavor!). Veggies and herbs come straight from Prema Farm, Mountain Mushrooms, Lattin Farms, and Bee Here Now Farm. The team gets their cheeses and meats from a handful of small farms in northern California and right here in the Silver State, and they’re proud to partner with farms that put animal welfare first.
Ask these guys about that crust, and you will get an earful about the importance of not only the ingredients you start with, but the fermentation process itself. And hey, it makes sense. Pizza is 60% or more dough, and when you drop the ball here, the whole pie suffers. The Pizza Collective prefers an overnight, room-temperature fermentation, which is how they get that soft, buttery, mellow flavor profile.
See? The Best
The Pizza Collective crew slings dough Tuesdays through Sunday, from 11 am to 9 pm (or until the dough runs out). If pizza is your weakness, quit wasting your time anywhere else and see how these pies stack up to the zillion other pizza joints in town. One pizza, and we think you’ll agree with that bold claim above.