When Cathy, “The Gastronomer,” declared she wanted to order chicken liver bruschetta ($9) as one of our shared appetizers at Pizzeria Mozza on Saturday night, I was a bit hesitant.
Okay, fine, I was horrified.
I do attempt to keep an open mind about food, and have enjoyed other kinds of liver in the past (hello foie gras croque monsieur), but chicken livers sounded… well, like cat food. Or like something the mom of a robust family is forced to eat because all the bratty kids call dibs on the legs and thighs and breast meat.
Despite my reservations, I shrugged my shoulders and went with it. We were at Pizzeria Mozza after all, and, as far as I’m concerned, the resto can do no harm. (Except when they run out of the seasonal pumpkin gelato at the precise moment that I try to order it for dessert. Wah wah.)
At first, I was relieved when I saw that the bruschetta came with only three pieces. That meant that two in our party of four would have to split one, and I wouldn’t have to attempt to choke down more than four lady-like bites if I found it repulsive. Unfortunately, my clever plan to shun as much chicken liver as possible was foiled as soon as I bit into my half of bruschetta. It was delicious. So delicious that I spent the next couple minutes enviously watching Cathy and her fiancee Vern devour the rest of their full pieces with audible sighs of pleasure.
Along with the chicken livers, our table also ordered another antipasti I’d never tried at the resto before – the Brussels sprouts with prosciutto breadcrumbs ($12). While we expected the Brussels to be served warm, we ultimately loved the combination of the room temperature green veggies that were tossed with a generous serving of a tangy balsamic vinegar-based dressing before being topped off with the texturally pleasing breadcrumbs.
Later, as I took charge on the clams, garlic, oregano, parmigiano, and pecorino pizza that I’ve enjoyed on a previous occasion (I actually found it to be a little fishy for my tastes on Saturday), my favorite bartender/server Sean stopped by to say “hello.”
“Still good?” He asked with a smile.
“Still good!” I said and beamed back – thrilled to be there instead of with the crazies on Santa Monica Blvd. for the Halloween parade.
After he’d departed from our table, Cathy leaned in to whisper, “I can see why this is your favorite restaurant.”
I nodded in agreement. Even with the occasional misfire, Pizzeria Mozza still never fails to surprise, challenge and trick me into delighting in something new. I can’t wait to go back for visit #9 -- next up, bone marrow.
641 N Highland Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90036