Friday, March 1, 2013

San Francisco: Cupola Pizzeria

Cupola Pizzeria  Westfield San Francisco Centre, 865 Market St./5th St., upstairs/4th floor/under the dome, (415) 896-5600.  L-D daily.  Featuring a handcrafted Stefano Ferrara pizza oven imported from Italy—it uses almond wood and fires up to 900 degrees--and with a host of communal tables, this spot is famous for its traditional blistered-crust Neapolitan pizza.  Placed on the table atop a raised holder, popular versions include the Margherita with San Marzano tomatoes, buffalo mozzarella, and basil; the Carne with housemade sausage, spicy salumi, and sweet onion; and the Arrabiata with San Marzano tomatoes, pancetta, and chili peppers.  Menu highlights include warm mozzarella topped with perhaps Brussels sprout leaves and Meyer lemon sauce (this is my hands-down personal favorite), delicate torn-pasta “handkerchiefs,” and potato gnocchi Bolognese.  Salads are lovely, and desserts inviting—most especially the affogato with vanilla ice cream, coffee syrup, and scrumptious candied almonds topped with shaved white chocolate.  For something different, order La Festa di Tutte Le Feste (“the feast of all feasts”) with matched wines (one prosecco, two whites, two reds).  Chef Marc Tennison sends out taste bud-stimulating dishes that include antipasti, salad, pasta, pizza, and dessert.  Overall, this bustling restaurant’s menu reminds me of something you would find in Italy; it is quite a pleasant surprise to find it here in a shopping mall and is the perfect place to refuel for, or recover from, shopping.

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images c2013 Carole Terwilliger Meyers

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