Wood Fire Pizza's are aren't the most common in Bangalore. Whether it's because the Wood Fire oven is difficult to set up, or because permissions have been hard to come by, the end result is you almost never see Wood Fire Pizza's in Bangalore, though it's a fast growing commodity. That makes them a bit of a luxury to Bangaloreans, who are craving the crunchy base you get as you dig into a slide of golden heaven. But I'm getting ahead of myself, because you don't even know where to find this exotic dish (well it's exotic enough ok!).
In Bangalore, there aren't too many places you can define as classy. Mumbai is full of these classy malls, restaurants and venues, as is Delhi - but Bangalore is rather behind on this curve. That's not to say they don't exist, but much like the un-spotted Wood Fire Oven, classy places are few and far between. However, if there's one spot anyone in Bangalore can agree on - It's UB City, a shopping mall cum entertainment venue cum residential area. A place like UB City could easily slot into a city like Paris, what with it's vast array of High end fashion (Burberry, LV, Armani, etc) classy drinking and dining venues (you know, until everyone get's drunk) and top end apartments as well, it really is the creme dela creme of Bangalore's High Society and everyone else. So it was only last week where I was walking to one of the classy drinking venues for a quiet Sunday drink with some friends, as my nose caught the scent of a freshly cooked pizza coming out of the kitchen. A new Pizza place in UB City? 'I must find out what they call this brave new venture' I thought to myself. Why Brave? Because right across from this newer venue is one of Bangalore's most famous and well regarded Italian restaurants - Toscano, which I have frequented many a time. Either way, I quickly noted down the name, and a week later I found myself sitting and ordering my favoured pizza topping - A Pepperoni Pizza at Cafe Mangii.
As you can see in the picture above, it's quite a decent looking meal, topped with a few olives (always nice for a little extra salt as well). Digging in, I did find the crust to be a little difficult to cut with the knives (not because it was necessarily overcooked, but heaven forbid Restaurants think a simple butter knife is good enough to properly cut into a Wood Fire Pizza). Either way, taking my first bite was heavenly because it was actually a very well made pizza. Just enough cheese to give it light feel, and not enough to overpower you with a face full of dairy. The tomato sauce was salty enough without making you cringe at the taste, and the pepperoni was nice too (though in Bangalore, great Salami and Pepperoni is impossible to find). I found myself actually thinking "This is better than Toscano". By the end of the Pizza, I fully believed that Toscano finally had a real competitor in Bangalore, and the fact it was Wood Fired made it even better.
Oh there was some Green Salad as well which was decent and so on and so forth, but Pizza right! Side note on the Green Salad with walnuts - It wasn't the freshest, but it wasn't the worst either - it could go either way but I went for the Pizza at the end of the day. The service was pretty decent, though the Salad was the slowest out of the gate for some off reason.
The only issue? The price was a little high. Rs 1400 ($25 AUD) for a Pizza, a Soup (I didn't have that so I can't tell you how it was), and a Salad with only a bottle of water is quite pricey for the average food goer in Bangalore. Though in fairness, the quality of their Pizza's really can walk the talk as one of Bangalore's best Pizzas. Find out more about them here.