I had always assumed that The Sausage Factory earned its name with a giggle and a wink. After all, it's right around the corner from a bar called Moby Dick, and down the block from a nail salon called Hand Job.
But our waitress at this Castro pizza-pasta joint swore that the double entendre is accidental. The place started its life as an actual sausage factory before morphing into its current incarnation in 1968. The dark wood, Victorian decor and the Frank Sinatra on the sound system certainly don't invoke anything brazen or tawdry.
The pizza, well, it comes on a thick slab of crust that's been cooked on a screen. It feels a bit doughy at the center, but somehow manages to dry out by the ends.
Pick up a slice, and the quilt of cheese tends to slide off, revealing a layer of sweet, pasty tomato sauce. On the sausage pie, hefty chunks of fennel-y pork break up the landscape.
Even on their small pizza ($11.50), all that crust and cheese and pork makes for a sizable portion of food. Sometimes bigger isn't better.