Bailico Pizza www.basilico.co.uk
If you like your pizzas about the same size as those spare wheels you see on the back of 4×4’s ostentatiously daubed with the credentials of an upmarket car showroom, then Basilico is for you. Their pizza, much like a small planet, is large enough to have its own moon.
Many good things have been said about Basilico, in fact Harden’s 2010 reckon it’s ‘the best delivery pizza in town’ and just like most other gourmet Italian pizza delivery companies their pizzas are “all hand-prepared and always baked in the wood-fired oven to achieve that authentic, crispy base and feature a wide range of toppings using top quality ingredients.”
Menu wise all the regulars make an appearance; Americana, Quattro Fromaggi and Napoletana. Alongside these sit combinations of toppings more specific to Basilico like the Pizza Blanca with mushrooms on a garlic base with mozzarella, brie and fresh spinach and Calzone Basilico, a folded pizza containing spicy italian sausage, roasted sweet peppers, tomato sauce, mozzarella and red onions. The All Day Breakfast Pizza- which wouldn’t look out of place on Fire & Stone’s menu- adds to Basilico’s list of specialities.
We ordered the Pizza Fungi au Truffle with wild mushrooms, tomato, basil, mozzarella, Italian salami and truffle oil. Having briefly roamed the pedestrianised cobbles of Canarby Street to find the now moped-free delivery boy, I carried the pizza up the steep stairs to the office with the realities of obesity weighing on my mind. The box was so large that I became wedged in the stairwells several times and had to lift the pizza above my head to in order to pass by.
Time to tuck into the pizza. On first sight the main thing that was obvious, besides the dimensions, was oil. Any other time I would say it was grease but it seems unfair to demote truffle oil down the hierarchy of fats.
Taste wise the pizza was pretty much what I expected it to be for its price of £16.75. The base was as an authentic pizza’s should be with its thin dough and crispy crust, there was just the right amount of mozzarella melted onto the sweet tomato sauce and the mushrooms were distributed evenly so that with every bite you were bound to get at least one but possibly three. The most surprising element was the taste of the mushrooms because whilst most mushroom topped pizzas claim to boast several varieties you can rarely taste the difference between one type and the other. Not so with Basilico’s Pizza Fungi au Truffle; each mushroom had a distinct texture and the tiny ones were briny like they’d been pickled in vinegar or salted water.
Plus due to their size, a meal for two of pizza, a customised salad with dressing, dessert and bottle of wine is bound to leave you full up. Desserts on offer include Tiramisu and Oddono’s famed ice cream.
Whilst Basilico’s pizza was perfectly adequate and not bad value given it’s size, it was hardly what could be called ‘out of this world’. We all felt that perhaps the quality of the pizza had been compromised a little by its delivery and for that reason it’s worth checking out their new branch in Crouch End where diners can enjoy the pizza fresh from the oven.