Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Review: Seventh Hill Pizza, Washington DC

Washington DC is a great destination for a thousand reasons, but the pizza there is rarely celebrated. However, on past visits we found three destination pizza joints: Wiseguy NY Pizza, 2Amys, and Comet Ping Pong.
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For my latest trip, we targeted Seventh Hill Pizza, located in Capitol Hill on 7th Street, which is also the current home of the Eastern Flea Market. It was a great part of town, vibrant with young professionals, hip shops, and trendy restaurants.

We arrived for lunch on a sweltering June Saturday, and we just beat a long line of mostly take-out diners. We scanned the interesting list of pizza varieties (each available in 8" personal or 12" sharing size) and opted for a 12" Potomac Ave pie. It featured an olive oil base, mozzarella, parmesan, felino salami, arugula, and pecorino. Service was fast and friendly.

I hadn't realized it, but this pie did not include any tomatoes or tomato sauce. It arrived as a lovely round of golden crust with a few char marks, very pale cheese, brick-colored rounds of salami, and a huge mound of arugula that had been applied post bake.  The lump of greens was ungainly, but we managed to distribute it evenly over the 8 small slices.
Great char on the undercarriage

The crust set the tone, and it was superb. It had the look of a Neapolitan, but it was more dense, more firm, and more crisp. It had a terrific flavor, too. I think the olive oil base did a world of good for the crust.

On top, the three cheeses practically burst with a salty tang - I have to think it was the pecorino that made it sing. Even with three cheeses, it was not a gloppy overload, and it had a crispy chew from browning in the wood-fired oven. 

Not surprisingly, the excellent salami added another level of flavor and texture. The arugula was more a garnish than a key component, but it did lend a bit of balance.

We wolfed this pie down quickly - every bite was a treasure, including the crunchy cornicione. It was a tad pricey at $16 for a 12" pie, but a good value nonetheless.  

Truly destination pizza, and second only to 2Amys of the pies we've had in DC. Toss in the nice ambiance and the pleasant vibe of the neighborhood, and it's a great place for a repeat visit.

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