I remember walking past Pizza East‘s Portobello Road branch and something about the place just captivated me. Ever since I made a mental note in my head to definitely pay a visit someday for a nice casual meal.
The restaurant looks like a Georgian pub on the outside and is located quite at the heart of the renowned Portobello Market. The setting is really bright, with plenty of natural light. There’re a few tables for al fresco dining as well. It is of two-storey with an upstairs area too. The restaurant overall has a buzzing but laid-back vibe.
As already stated in their name, Pizza East specialises in wood fire pizzas. Apart from that, they also offer a range of classic Italian antipasti, salads, al fornos, and lots of side dishes to choose from.
Porcini Mushroom, Spinach, Cream, Mozzarella (£12)
I originally was going to opt for the Prawn, Chilli, Cream Pizza (£13). However, it was unavailable that evening so I ended up with my second pick. The pizza was topped with Porchini mushroom, spinach and mozzarella over a cream base.
The crust was crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. Not as fluffy as a sourdough base does but still pretty fluffy to enjoy. As for the toppings, at first, I thought it was slightly bland. But after adding a little touch of chilli oil on top, the flavours pop out then. Perhaps it could use a bit more black pepper and some herbs to elevate the flavours, but all in all, it’s definitely a satisfying and delicious pizza.
Buffalo Mozzarella, Tomato, Basil (£10)
The other pizza we got was a classic tomato & basil plus Buffalo Mozzarella. As I always say – less is more, and you can’t really go wrong this classic flavour combo. The tomato base offered a refreshing taste, especially under this summery London weather. The Buffalo Mozzarella was fresh and carried this soft and delicate flavour. With a little drizzle of chilli oil, it then elevated every bit of flavour on the pizza.
Mac ‘n’ Cheese (£9)
Feeling for a filthy treat as if pizzas are not enough, we decided to share some Mac & Cheese as well. It was still bubbling and sizzling when served onto the table.
I liked how the cheese blend got a very nice creamy texture but wasn’t overly rich or heavy to taste. The good quality of cheese contributed to the amazing flavours of the dish. It was a good classic but I feel it could be even better with a little extra kick of savoury flavours to elevate the overall flavour. I’m definitely not complaining though as it gave me such a satisfying sensation in the belly.
…Pizza East definitely accommodated us well and we had a really enjoyable meal. The food was great, though I would like to see a little extra tease of flavour on it. My favourite part is the rusticity of the food combined with the buzzing vibe of the place. It was everything I anticipated and imagined when the place first captivated me. It’s a very ideal restaurant for a casual and chilled meal with a small group of friends. The liveliness and quality food would for sure offer you a great experience!
No halal meats available. Plenty Vegetarian options available.
Tel: 020 8969 4500 | Website: www.pizzaeast.com/
Nearest station: Ladbroke Grove