Monday, November 2, 2009

Pizzeria Mozza: Where chicken livers are a treat, not a trick

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.

Pizzeria Mozza
641 N Highland Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90036
(323) 866-5300

13 comments:

Gastronomer said...

P Mozza was crazy-good on Saturday! I kept thinking about the livers all weekend long. Sign me up for trip #9! Marrow sounds fantastic.

H. C. said...

I'd love to join you on that marrow trip, perfect appetizer to the butterscotch budino.

weezermonkey said...

I've still not been!

Kudos on trying new things. Now we just have to get you to the SGV for even more new things.

yutjangsah said...

Visit no 9? I've only been twice. Definitely need to go again and maybe even try the chicken liver!

Anna A. said...

Chicken livers... the perfect example of doing something every day that scares you. Especially on Halloween. It paid off!

Jenn said...

You can add me into the category of those scared to eat chicken livers. It's not that I don't hate it. It's the taste and texture that sort of puts me off. I wouldn't mind trying it a different dishes though.

Diana said...

Cathy - So much fun! I'm so glad you forced us to order the livers. High five!

HC - I'll take the seasonal gelato pie for my dessert. :) But only if its pumpkin!

Sharon - NO WAY! I'm shocked! You've been everywhere! You really must correct this ASAP. And maybe then I'll consider coming out to the SGV for some more eats. :)

Sook - If I can eat chicken liver, you can eat chicken liver.

Anna - Totally paid off! I'm really glad I tried it.

Jenn - I have no basis of comparison, but the P Mozza version was awesome. How can you go wrong with something topped with crispy guanciale?

Esi said...

I haven't been, but I HAVE done Mozza 2 Go. The budino...ohhhhhhh.

The Duo Dishes said...

Mozzas brussels sprouts are the sprouts that make you change your idea about sprouts. No one can hate them after eating one of those. Nice job trying (and liking) the chicken liver!

Cinnamon-Girl Reeni♥ said...

I'm scared of them too! Your a much braver woman than I! The brussels sprouts sound so divine - prosciutto crumbs? YUM.

SinoSoul said...

The ISHT!? my chicken liver thingies didn't have bacon on top. RIPPED!

Diana said...

Esi - I know everybody LOVES the budino, but the seasonal gelato pies are my favorite. :)

Chrystal & Amir - Those brussels were pretty rockin'! Makes me want to tackle them in the kitchen soon!

Reeni - They were topped with guanciale - how can anything that is topped with crispy pork deliciousness be bad?

Tony - Maybe they can sense your distaste for P Mozza and it was a subconscious ommission?

Food, she thought. said...

I haven't been to Pizzeria Mozza because I don't believe I should have to have a reservation for a pizzeria and every time I go it is packed. But that chicken liver could change my mind.