With winter's grasp upon us, certified Pizza Obsessive Will Fain has finally introduced the world (and hungry Portlanders) to what those who know him say was a long time coming: Handsome Pizza.
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This could arguably be the best brick-and-mortar New York–ish slice in Stumptown. A crisp thin crust, a sauce that nicely balances sweet and savory, and a judiciously distributed blanket of dry-aged mozzarella. Its most glaring fault is the lack of life at the rim. Both slices I sampled—one plain ($3) and one pepperoni ($3.25)—catwalked an edge crust that was almost completely flat and relatively insubstantial in the flavor department. I visited on only their fifth day being open, so know that there's plenty of time for them to improve. That said, I definitely plan on returning. It's a quality greasy slice for a decent value and in a convenient location.
Portobello Vegan Trattoria first caught my eye while reading about New Zealand transplant/pizza chef Will Fain on various food sites. I knew Fain had a knack for homemade Margherita oven-hack pies with fresh mozz and a hankering for DiFara's pepperoni, so to find out that he'd signed on as cheeseless, meatless pizzaiolo had my head spinning. I knew this would be a challenge for me as eater, and must certainly be one for him as cook. But their website advertises "traditional, Neapolitan-inspired pizzas," so I was eager to check it out.
[Photographs: Will Fain] Wow. Longtime Slice'r Will Fain (who goes by egadman on Slice/SE) seems to have parlayed his Pizza Obsessive-ness into a full-time pizza gig in Portland, Oregon. He sends in this MPM entry of a test pie from his new venture: I've been hired as a the pizzaiolo at Portobello Vegan Trattoria. It's been fun so far. The new restaurant space is opening on Wednesday. It'll be my first time as part of a kitchen line. Should be an interesting experience. I'll try to keep up my blog with amusing anecdotes. So far I've just been just...
I've "known" Will Fain for years now—at least through email and the comments here on Slice. He's given me countless heads-ups to crazy and cool and tasty pizza intel from around the world and the web — as well as some great tips on Portland, Oregon, pizza before I made my recent trip there. He's this week's Pizza Obsessive. Get to know him! —The Mgmt. Will Fain, pizza obsessive. [Photograph: Will Fain] Name: Will Fain Location: Portland, Oregon Occupation: Graphic designer/production artist Website: egadman.blogspot.com What type of pizza do you prefer? What people seem to be calling New York–Neapolitan. I...