Wednesday, 25 March 2009
Primo opened late last year to quite a success. They have Neapolitan pizzas that are just yum yum yum yum yum! This one here is the Fiorentine - spinach, cheese, pancetta and egg. Oh yum. Yum yum yum. They also have pastas cooked al dente (a rarity in Taipei), and lots of cheeses and inexpensive wines (one of the investors is a cheese and wine importer).
Here is Gloria, my next-door neighbor at work. She sits at what used to be the disaster area, now cleaned up. The mess is gone, but life is no less exciting - she's been teaching me how to cuss! Well, I'm trying not to learn, but she swears like a sailor too, and sometimes I accidentally pick up her vocabulary. When I heard that she was doing a story on Primo, I wanted to come along, because I was really curious about the restaurant (this was before I tried it myself), so I stopped by after my own interview at a hospital. Jason, the head chef and general manager, seems like a diligent and nice guy, and he learned how to make his pizzas in, of all places, Tokyo.
He explained that Neapolitan pizzas are made by just pressing on the dough in the middle, rather than by flattening with a rolling pin, and then baked in an oven at more than 450 degrees Celsius for just three or four minutes. He says his imported oven costed more than TWD 1 mn. Expensive oven...
The pizzas are really tasty. The crust in the middle is almost nonexistent and seem to only serve the purpose of holding the toppings. The crust on the end (or, the "ears" as they are called in Japanese), is crispy on the outside and soft and chewy on the inside. Great texture.
So far, I've tried the AOP (olive oil, garlic, cheese, chili peppers), Fiorentine, three cheese (with in includes blue cheese, and they give you honey on the side to drizzle over - very Japanese, and very good) and genovese (mushroom).
I've been there three times in the last two weeks. Once during the interview, once with Daphne and Karen (my colleagues on the health/medicine beat) and once with Ann. Lunch with Mom and Dad there tomorrow makes it four times.
They have mainly just simple dishes there. The basic Caesar salad there is topped with parmigiano from a drum sitting in the dining area, freshly shaved for you as the food is delivered to the table. It's quite tasty - the parmigiano soft and fluffy, dressing complete with egg yolk, garlic and anchovy. The squid ink pasta, sauteed mushroom with shrimp and pesto sauce and oven baked vegetables were so so. Service is good when they're not incredibly busy. While the servers are young, you can tell they've been properly trained. The price is reasonable - TWD200 to TWD300 for pizzas. Ann and I ordered a salad, pizza, glass of house wine, glass of fresh juice, two desserts, and we paid about TWD1300 total.
So far, so good.
Fuxing South Road Section 1, Lane 107, #14, 1st Floor
+886 2 2711 1726
You may want to make reservations, three days in advance.