Author Topic: Wild Craft Sourdough Pizza, Culver City (LA), CA  (Read 1023 times)

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Offline Peasant

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Wild Craft Sourdough Pizza, Culver City (LA), CA
« on: April 24, 2013, 03:28:23 PM »
I heard of this place through Slice: http://slice.seriouseats.com/archives/2013/03/first-look-wildcraft-sourdough-pizza-los-angeles.html
It's a good introduction to what WildCraft is trying to achieve.  There have been other good mentions of WildCraft's opening too but I'll let you find them.

On my latest trip to CA I stopped by Wild Craft before my flight at nearby LAX.  Good thing I had extra time because they were sloooowww.  Besides waiting for the hostess to notice me waiting to get seated and the slow cooking (I'll get to that soon), service was good.  I'll focus on the pizza now. 

While waiting to be seated, I had plenty of time to watch the pies being made.  I thought I read that one or more of the partners were trained in Naples, but their training didn't show here (I assume I wasn't looking at the partners either).  Dough wasn't stretched thin and the oven looked dark and cold (flames were very small.  I should mention that I came in around 8:30pm and the restaurant was pretty full.  While there were plenty of tickets, it looked like the stick man was working two pies at a time.

So with my expectations low, I got seated outside (better light for pictures!) but I never got the pie before dark.  I ordered the Burrata Pie (had a craving for burrata and fried rosemary): squash blossom, burrata, fried rosemary, shaved pistachio, orange oil.

The flavors were pretty good but imbalanced.  The squash blossoms were totally over powered (delicious picked out though) while buried under the burrata.  Perhaps there was just too much burrata on top of their base low-moisture mootz.  Pistachios seemed chopped rather than shaved which made for some overly crunchy bites.

Now to the dough, dang that was sour.  I love sourdough bread though; I just didn't expect the level of sour in each bite.  Smelling the cornicione was like tearing into a fresh sourdough baguette.  I hope that's what WildCraft is going for in sourness.  I think the pie would have been less sour and better if it was stretched thinner; I'm guessing that the pie could have been a couple inches bigger in diameter based on the thickness of the pie (see pictures). 

I attached some low light pics and one with flash that show the poor oven management and stretching (poor spring, thick crust, limited charring).

In conclusion, it was worth a visit for a different pie.  I hope they get their act together though or I'd consider buying out the place to do it for them!


Offline tinroofrusted

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Re: Wild Craft Sourdough Pizza, Culver City (LA), CA
« Reply #1 on: April 24, 2013, 05:53:06 PM »
Thanks for the review. I live in Orange County so I will probably get over that way at some point.  Sounds like they have some real problems.  I don't care for very sour naturally leavened pizza. I like it when there is a slight tang (and of course that fantastic texture you get with a naturally leavened pizza), but if its more than a mild tang it's very offputting for me.  But that's just my personal preference. 

Regards,

TinRoof

Offline Peasant

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Re: Wild Craft Sourdough Pizza, Culver City (LA), CA
« Reply #2 on: April 25, 2013, 10:45:16 AM »
Yeah, I think I'm with you on the personal preference; mild-tang and even that at the cornicione where the bread is on its own.  But maybe WildCraft wants it really sour since that's what they're marketing.

Re: problems; it's really just oven management and maybe some stretching lessons (assuming they're not supposed to be that thick).  I'm surprised the owners have backed off so soon or didn't train their main producers better in the first month.  One more tally for the Mangieri's and Bianco's out there controlling their quality personally and relentlessly.

@tinroofrusted: ever try Pitfire Pizza?  It's hit or miss but I almost always loved it and when I was living in the area they were the nearest and best option.  The first time I had one was when their Westwood location opened and the first 7-8 times that I went (over a couple months) Paul Hibler, an owner, was almost always there making sure the new location was up to par.  I really love and respect that commitment and I think it shows; walking around, introducing yourself and chatting with new customers always helps too.

Offline misterschu

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Re: Wild Craft Sourdough Pizza, Culver City (LA), CA
« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2013, 10:49:17 AM »
I was in LA last weekend and went to WildCraft on April 26.  I was actually disappointed with the sourness of the dough.  I was hoping for flavor similar to Wild Rise in Brooklyn, where the dough is very sour and complemented by the buffalo mozzarella on the pie.  My friend and I ordered one margherita and one white pie with cherry tomato, arugula and prosciutto.   The pies overall were good, if I ignore my expectation of sourdough, overall well cooked and crafted. 

We had some leftovers and the crust tasted more sour after spending a night in the fridge. 

Next time I'm in LA I'm planning to try 800 Degrees, Pizzeria Mozza, and Mother Dough (also sourdough).

Offline Peasant

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Re: Wild Craft Sourdough Pizza, Culver City (LA), CA
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2013, 11:01:20 PM »
I was in LA last weekend and went to WildCraft on April 26.  I was actually disappointed with the sourness of the dough.  I was hoping for flavor similar to Wild Rise in Brooklyn, where the dough is very sour and complemented by the buffalo mozzarella on the pie.  My friend and I ordered one margherita and one white pie with cherry tomato, arugula and prosciutto.   The pies overall were good, if I ignore my expectation of sourdough, overall well cooked and crafted. 

We had some leftovers and the crust tasted more sour after spending a night in the fridge. 

Next time I'm in LA I'm planning to try 800 Degrees, Pizzeria Mozza, and Mother Dough (also sourdough).

Maybe I went on a bad night for execution.  Mother Dough has been on my list for a long while but it's just never near where I'm headed!


 

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