Delfina has held a special place in my heart since I first dined there on a special birthday back when they were still a tiny little space. Not only did they hold us a bar table after I called to give up our dining room table when my dinner companion was delayed horribly by traffic on the 101, they had Turley zinfandel on the list at a great price. I was smitten.
Given my crush on Delfina, and my love for crispy Neapolitan style pizza, it’s an understatement to say I was excited about the opening of Pizzeria Delfina. I’ve spent the last few years (since my 2001 trek through Southern Italy) perfecting my own pizza technique with the assistance of Todd English‘s Figs Cookbook, and was hoping Pizzeria Delfina would be on a par — at a minimum — with English’s pizzas.
My first visit was excellent for the most part, with cafe-style service that was prompt and courteous but nothing to write home about, and good pizzas that were pretty thin, but not quite as crunchy as I would like. I like to eat my pizza by hand and get bummed out when slices have to be eaten with a knife and fork, as was the case with all but the fennel sausage pizza. This minor disappointment was more than made up for by the amazing lemon budina dessert, and for the salad prep person surprising us with some parmesan cheese shavings after catching us sighing over his tossing away the remnants left over from the salads he was plating. Overall I was so pleased that I grabbed a 4-cheese with house cured pepperoni to go to surprise my boyfriend with when he arrived home from work.
The next visit almost a week later was not so sweet, however. The surly service from the waitress was some of the worst ever. We felt badgered about our choices, neglected with our wine service, and abandoned overall. Had it been crowded, or a weekend night, we might have seen a reason for a less than stellar evening, but this was a Wednesday night! And our overall bill, including our bottle of wine, was over $50, so it wasn’t that we were cheapskates. Who knows what the waitress’ issues were that evening, but taking them out on the customers is not OK by me. I won’t be back, and I won’t be recommending them either, which bums me out. I’m hoping that things improve.