Steve and I popped down to Exeter’s newest pizza restaurant on Saturday. Pizza & Stein has opened its doors on The Quayside and is open 7 days a week for your pizza fix. 11.30am until late.
The pizzas are made to the Napoli rules. The pizza base is simple. Flour, water, salt and yeast. For the toppings, San Marzano tomatoes make the base for flavour and are grown on the volcanic plains to the south of Mount Vesuvius in Italy. Only Buffalo Mozzarella can be used. Made with the milk from water buffalo raised semi wild in the marshlands of Campania and Lazio. This buffalo mozzarella is protected with its own protected designation of origin. A little basil may be added and it is kept very simple. The flavours are clean and fresh.
We arrived at 8pm and were shown to our table. We had been given a table with a view right in front of the wood fired pizza oven. I felt like we were watching a show whilst the pizzas were being made. It was great to speak to the chefs whilst they were cooking and ask questions about the ingredients. Stuart was tonight’s chef who was passionate about the produce and obviously loved what he was doing. Watching him work you could see that he was really on top of his game.
Steve was keen to try a two pint Stein from their excellent, large collection of international lagers and beers. Stein’s are two pint vessels used for holding beer and found a lot in Germany (£8.00 per Stein). I tried a bit of his beer and you need mega muscles to hold it. It’s heavy when full! I opted for something a little more dainty and lady like. A glass of chilled prosecco (£3.50 per glass).
We ordered our starter. A sharing platter featuring Italian provolone cheese, bread, salami, ham and pickles (£12.00 for two sharing). Stuart said that they use the leftover pizza dough to make the bread first thing in the morning so it’s all kept “in house” and keeps food waste down. What good thinking. The bread was delicious but would have been nice if it had been warmed through to give a little crunch.
Our main dishes were chosen. In order to see a few different dishes on the menu I ordered the courgette, artichoke and fennel salad with a Gorgonzola dressing (£7.00). Steve had a marinara pizza with an additional topping of anchovies (£5.00 + £3.50 for each topper). My salad was nice and flavoursome. The Gorgonzola dressing was very good and coated the rocket leaves nicely. Some bread served with this salad might have been a nice touch so you can mop up the juices. Perhaps a pizza base cooked in the wood fired oven?
Steves pizza was absolutely delicious. Cooked to perfection in the wood fired oven in about 90 seconds. Real fast food!
We were shown the dessert menu and decided to share the tiramisu. We both love tiramisu and if it’s on the menu then it’s normally sampled. The flavour was spot on here. You could taste the coffee and alcohol but neither were overpowering. The mascarpone was light and the sponge fingers were moist but not disintegrating. It was truly delicious. A great choice for the end of the meal. I also had a flat white to finish off my meal nicely.
Steve and I had a good night at Pizza Stein and enjoyed chatting to Stuart and later on Janice. Janice is one of the owners and again is very keen to develop the menu and let the business grow organically. I look forward to visiting again later on in the year when their roof terrace opens with views of the river. Perfect for a hot summers day. Pop down to Exeter’s Quayside and give them a try.