Here at CDClifestyle, we have a fairly good idea of what our perfect pizza should consist of. A really great pizza has to be thin, and slightly charred in places from being baked quickly in a traditional, roaring pizza oven. And of course, the toppings have to be fresh, authentic and delectably molten. That is what we are looking for, and we have found two places that master this skilled art of perfect pizza making – Bunga Bunga and B-SOHO.
On paper, these two pizzerias are strikingly similar. Both restaurants promise fine, authentic Italian fare (predominantly in pizza form) and a great night out. In reality, these two pizzerias really are strikingly similar, but with just a few subtle nuances that set them apart, and warrant regular visits to both. B-SOHO is the more refined of the two, and Bunga Bunga a little more rustic and quirky. Both, however, seem to have adhered to that universal law of less is more, which means that nothing detracts from superb quality of the food.
Bunga Bunga is an old timer at the pizzeria game. They know what they’re doing, and it shows in the food, the service, and the place. In fact, we love it so much that we’ve been before (read our previous review HERE). Only adding to the Italian allure of this eccentric eatery is their new concept of Scooter Tuesdays. Indeed, Bunga Bunga loves Italian scooters so much, that if you drive one (or an Italian motorbike) and park it outside, you’ll be treated to a free pizza in the restaurant. Trust us, it is definitely worth it. We were treated to ‘The Untouchable Nancy’; piled high with goat’s cheese, pancetta, spinach and egg, and ‘Ruby Loves’; a mouth-watering offering of Nduja spicy, soft sausage, Calabrese salami, cherry tomatoes and mozzarella. Truly scrumptious.
Last night, however, we ventured Soho way in search of the newly opened, B-SOHO. B-SOHO was opened last week by a group of Italian friends, who want to share with the rest of London what they love about pizza. The pizzeria has a certain style and elegance that Bunga Bunga lacks, although in much the same way Bunga Bunga has the reputation and atmosphere that we are sure B-SOHO strives to obtain. On a Tuesday evening, the upstairs bar area of B-SOHO is packed. Plenty of Italian men and beautiful women seem to be the young crowd it attracts, most probably due to the social circles the owners run in. Chesterfield sofas add a touch of British charm to the cool, relaxed atmosphere of the upstairs bar, but we are escorted downstairs to the neat, little, underground restaurant. Despite having an air of finesse and refinement about it, B-SOHO still prides itself on authentic, Italian gastronomy, which means big pizzas, and sharing starters. We started with a wooden board of Italian cheeses and cured meats, and potato and cheese croquetas but it was the pizzas, which have already gained quite a reputation on the London foodie circuit, that we were desperate to sample. The Margherita pizza was the prime example of a simple dish executed to perfection. We also opted for a Don Raffaele, which combined cream, pistachio nuts, speck and mozzarella atop the thinnest of bases. It was flavoursome, fresh and just the right consistency – soft enough to fold and ooze cheese, and yet crispy enough to tear and nibble, satisfied, on the crust. Real, easy eating, with enough polish to provide you with a special night out.
Written by Rebecca Atherton – 14/9/12
Easily, two of the best pizzerias in London, and both equally worthy of a visit, or two.
37 Battersea Bridge Road, London, SW11 3BA Tel: 020 7095 0360
21-22 Poland Street, London Tel: 020 7287 1661