Opened in March 2016 by the same creator behind Queen Margherita, Neapolitan style Pizzeria 88 is one of many spots popping up in Capitol Hill’s new pizza renaissance (Well is it really a re-birth? Maybe it’s just a regular naissance). This Cap Hill pizza boom includes spots like Dino’s, Sizzle Pie, and quite a few places that we haven’t had the chance to taste at yet. As Queen Margherita’s number one fans, we couldn’t wait to hit this Broadway spot to compare and contrast.
The Sunday night vibe at Pizzeria 88 was a little quiet, but with live music, vintage photos, friendly staff and a cozy pizza oven-warmed atmosphere, it was the perfect spot for a rainy November evening. If it looks familiar when you walk in, that’s because it is the former home of Corretto but now has a pizza oven.
Not wanting to be too decisive, I selected to sample a margherita with proscuitto on half ($14). Though this pizza really hit the spot, it didn’t stand out too much from many margherita pizzas we’ve had so far. That’s because it had sauce and cheese to rival the best. The main difference flavour-wise I could taste at Pizzeria 88 was the more rustic tasting crust. However, the thin center made it more challenging to wrangle, a feature we haven’t encountered too much recently. The generous, fresh sauce here stood out and could have contributed to this flimsiness. And when given the option, I’ll take a flimsy and saucy pizza over not enough sauce any day.
Kerri’s pizza morals usually prevent her from ordering pepperoni pizzas at traditional Neapolitan spots, mainly due to her belief that traditional pies don’t have the crust to support it but tried the pepperoni ($16) anyhow. To her, this might have been a rare case of complaints about too much pepperoni. Beyond the protein, she gave high marks to the soft crust and easily navigable the burnt spots. Everything tasted great to Kerri, but she wished the pizza held itself together better.
Both of us appreciated the generous sauce that we could dip our crust in. Everything on this pizza was independently good, but we agreed that some sort of magic was missing when it all came together. We had some difficulty rating this pizza for some reason, but have come to the conclusion of a still impressive 3.75 out of 5.