cheese restaurant


The T‑line may have brought Muni to a crash­ing halt, but it's done a lot for Dog­patch, and not just its real estate val­ues. Restau­rants, cafes, and gar­den stores have popped up along the Third Street cor­ri­dor in antic­i­pa­tion of Muni-enabled con­sumers flock­ing to the neigh­bor­hood. Bas­ing one's busi­ness plan on the via­bil­i­ty of Muni mov­ing any­one any­where seems unwise. Bas­ing one's busi­ness plan on serv­ing thin crust piz­za in a tiny space on an unlike­ly street cor­ner, how­ev­er, is a tried-and-true for­mu­la in San Fran­cis­co (see: Pizzetta 211). The apt­ly-named Pic­ci­no occu­pies such a cor­ner at 22nd Street and Ten­nessee. Pic­ci­no is lit­tle. It has a small menu. It serves small plates of nib­bles between lunch and din­ner. In the morn­ing you can find Blue Bot­tle cof­fee and fresh-baked pas­tries; at lunch piz­za and pani­ni take prece­dence; din­ner (only on select nights) builds on the lunch menu. I haven't expe­ri­enced break­fast and lunch, but at din­ner recent­ly I sam­pled three of the five piz­zas on offer, plus dessert. By sam­pled I mean split with one oth­er per­son. Like every­thing else at Pic­ci­no, the piz­zas aren't big. Which isn't bad, because it means you can eas­i­ly order three for two peo­ple and not feel too glut­ton­ish or stuffed. The crust is right-on—a per­fect com­bi­na­tion of crisp and chewy. The top­pings are a lit­tle less excit­ing. The night I was there, they had a margheri­ta, napo­le­tano, pep­per­one, bian­co, and a spe­cial involv­ing lemon zest and pine nuts. The toma­to sauce on the pep­per­one was a lit­tle too acidic for me, and the bian­co was a lit­tle bland. The real stand-out fla­vors were on the spe­cial, par­tic­u­lar­ly the lemon zest. The piz­za is good; we didn't leave any left­overs. Pic­ci­no is a great neigh­bor­hood restau­rant. If I lived in Dog­patch, I would be their most loy­al cus­tomer. Too bad I live in Cole Val­ley. This is the Gold­en Age of Piz­za in the Bay Area. With the likes of Pizzette, Pizze­ria Del­fi­na, Lit­tle Star, and Piz­zaio­lo around, it's not enough to be good if you want to pull peo­ple in from out of the neigh­bor­hood. While I'm will­ing to brave the Bay Bridge for Piz­zaio­lo, or the Rich­mond fog for Pizzette, Pic­ci­no isn't quite com­pelling enough for the trek to Dogpatch.