Masa

I was going off about how this one taco stand in Echo Park was pretty amazing. I had a bunch of people follow me only to find no stand. Fail. Then I said, wait, I know Tacos Arizas is next to the CVS on Sunset. Fail. Ok… how about Rodeo Grill. So we start walking towards Rodeo Grill and then I see Masa not so far away. I read about how they had Deep Dish pizzas. Wait! How about Masa? It was Valentine’s Day and the place was about to be packed with reservations and we had a 50 minute window to order and eat. No Deep Dish pizzas for us because they take 40 minutes to make, they said. So we had various bistro pizzas that were pretty darn good. But this post isn’t about their bistro pizzas. It’s about their Deep Dishes and I had to come another day.

So I came again some time later, with an even bigger group (awesome group, if I may add) from my church. It was better planned unlike last time. I called 40 minutes ahead and ordered 4 pies. The Deep Dish pizzas would be ready soon after we arrived.

It was glorious. I’ve never had a Deep Dish pizza before but it was something I’ve been wanting to try for a very long time. I’m assuming I’m in the minority, but the Chicago variant of pizza seemed a whole lot more appealing to me than the New York kind. I’m not too crazy about New York-style pizza. But that’s just me. But the Deep Dish, with the thick crust cooked in a pan, the ridiculous amount of toppings, the abundance of cheese, it all sounded good.

Masa was a good find. It has something that the rest of Los Angeles probably doesn’t have. Chicago-style pizza. But I’m going to have to say that the toppings weren’t as abundant as I imagined and it wasn’t as cheesy as I imagined. And I’m going to assume the pizzas in Chicago will blow me away. That makes Chicago a destination I need to get to. I want some pizza and steaks…

I feel like I’m stealing Masa’s thunder. In all honesty, I liked it. I liked it a lot actually. And it’s really something other places in this city doesn’t offer. Or at least I haven’t heard of any other places offering Deep Dish pizza. And being that flying all the way over to Chicago for a pizza is probably not reasonable every time you get a craving, Masa definitely isn’t a bad option. The servers are friendly. The prices are more than reasonable. Parking isn’t a problem. And a churro truck is a couple blocks away. Really though, Masa is an establishment in Los Angeles that’s worth frequenting.

Note: Deep Dish pizzas must be ordered 40 minutes ahead of time. And no earlier. It is a bit inconvenient that they don’t take orders earlier but hey, just don’t forget to call. Also, you can’t add toppings to the Chicago Pizzas that aren’t “Build Your Own.” They explain why but I still don’t understand. In that sense, they aren’t so accommodating. Everything else is great though.

There’s a metered lot on Lemoyne which is across the street from Masa.

Masa
1800 W Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90026
Phone: 213.989.1558

Masa of Echo Park on Urbanspoon

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Shakey’s

$6.99 lunch buffet. All the pizza, fried chicken, and Mojos you can eat for only $6.99. I’m not too crazy over the fried chicken at Shakey’s but their pizza and Mojos? Man oh man. Lunch buffet aside, I really like the pizza at Shakey’s. It’s nothing special really, pretty simple. I really like the crust on it as it’s nice and crisp. And do I have to go on with the mojos? Potatoes are cut along the width, not the length, and there’s this batter on there and it’s deep fried.

So I enjoy the food here to begin with. Imagine having as much as you want of it for only $6.99. What makes the buffet even better is that you can sample all the different kinds of pizzas they have, not just stick to a certain kind if you were to have ordered a whole pizza. And then all the Mojos you can handle. So they have several pies of assorted pizza, other food, fried chicken, Mojos, and a salad bar. I can’t stop mentioning how great a deal this is.

A little warning though.  I realized the importance of moderation after my lunch.  It took skipping dinner, a couple of hours of basketball at 7PM, and a can of coke afterwards at 10PM for me to feel normal.  So too much good may not be so good after all.  Whatever, for $6.99, you can eat in moderation and still walk away with a deal.  Pizza and Mojos, mmm mmm mmm!

Go find a Shakey’s near you.  And here’s what some haters have to say.

Shakey’s Pizza Parlor
6052 W Olympic Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90036
Phone: 323.937.4234

Pitfire Pizza Company

I frequent their location in Westwood.  I remember the first time I went to Pitfire Pizza.  I had the “Big Sur.”  It just happened to be a big disappointment and I wasn’t ready to go back.  I don’t know why but later I wanted to go back, only out of convenience.  Of course I had something else.  And I went again and again and again.  Pitfire Pizza grew on me and now I really like the place.  It’s $10 a pizza and I think the prices are pretty reasonable.  And like the name might suggest, it’s cooked in a pit.  Yummy.

I was in for a pleasant surprise today though.  After school ended, I met up with a couple of friends to go to the Pitfire Pizza location in Downtown.  We go to USC, and it’s just more practical to go there than the one in Westwood.  We met at around 5:30 and headed for Downtown.  It was just before six when we got there.  Lucky me, free street parking available at 6.  Then we walk into the spacious area of the Downtown location only to find out that Happy Hour is from 4-7pm!  That means the things on the menu are half off!  I’m not big on drinking but so are the beers on tap!  And also some of the wine too.  I got a bottled beer so the happy hour rates didn’t apply, but my total came out to just over $9.  Oh yea, this is including my Pitfire Sausage pizza.  About the Pitfire Sausage pizza, it’s gotta be my favorite.  Their mushroom pizza is next on the list.

I am so coming here again!  I don’t know if the rates apply to the other locations, I doubt it, at least I doubt the Westwood location has the Happy Hour special.  So I’m coming here right at 6 for free parking and some good cheap pizza and some beer on tap!  Imagine if you can’t find parking on the street… Well there’s a lot next door where you can pay a flat rate of $8.

Oh yeah, and it’s such a laid back environment.

Edited 4/21/09> Also recommended is the Burrata Pie!  Tomato sauce, burrata, carmelized onions, and a pile of wild arugula makes for a wonderful combination!

Pitfire Pizza Company (Downtown location)
108 W 2nd St # 108
Los Angeles, CA 90012
Phone: 213.808.1200

Pitfire Pizza Company on Urbanspoon

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