Restaurant: Milo and Olive
Location: 2723 Wilshire Blvd. Santa Monica, CA 90403. p 310.453.6776
Date: June 30, 2012 and June 15, August 9, & Sept 13, 2013
Rating: Very good neo-Neapolitan
There is a definite pizza revival trend going on. LA used to have no good pizza at all (and this was painful having spent so much time in Italian American dominated East Coast cities) but this has all changed. Like it’s cousin, Pizzeria Mozza, Milo and Olive is of the new generation of third (?) wave Neapolitan pizza.
Branzino ceviche. Peaches, cucumber, avocado, sumac. While more of a “tartar” than a ceviche, this was delicious.
“Bucatini Carbonara, Nueske’s bacon, pea tendrils, pecorino romano, farm egg yolk.” This was much lighter than a traditional Carbonara, although it had many of the same flavors. The Bucatini had a really nice chew to it. The whole thing was buttery, and strongly flavored of from the smokey pancetta, but it was not nearly as eggy and cheesy as the “real deal.” Rich enough though.
“Burrata pizza. La Quercia prosciutto, tomato, arugula, olive oil, sea salt.” This is basically a burrata, prosciutto, arugula salad on a pizza. The tomato sauce also served to balance out the creamy cheese and add a bit of acidity. I make a similar pizza myself, minus the ham (sigh).
Special pizza with fresh figs, Niman Ranch bacon, and gorgonzola cream. This is a riff on a particular style of pizza I really like: the salty/sweet/cheesy type. I make versions myself on Ultimate Pizza Night. This one had a soft sweetness to it, dominated by the fresh figs (I usually use dried ones myself). But it was quite nice. The bacon had a serious smoky richness. It was more pancetta or lardons, certainly not crispy bacon.
This is my favorite Milo & Olive pizza yet. The balsamic added a nice bit of sweetness to the cheese. The egg richness, and the ham salty goodness.
I was eagerly watching the dough guys to see how they shape their pies. My wife and I make our own Ultimate Pizza at home and the dough handling is one of the areas that we need to improve on.
Overall these were really good new wave pizzas. The dough was perfect and I want to experiment with some of the other toppings to see if one of them is truly awesome. They don’t have a real meatser meatser on the menu which is a shame. The Mozza version of that is spectacular.