Saturday, December 15, 2007

S.L.U.T.s and slices

Nothing says "holiday" like a tasty Christmas lunch of arguably the best pizza in town...especially when your boss is footing the bill.

Yesterday my department of four hoofed it from downtown to the latest outpost of the lovely Tutta Bella. We had intended to ride the S.L.U.T. (South Lake Union Trolley*, for those non-Seattleites scratching their heads and saying "What the huh?"), but after waiting for 15 minutes at its first stop in front of the Westin, we gave up and walked the several blocks (fine with me, because walking is my preferred mode of transportation). Two blocks from our destination, we passed the S.L.U.T., temporarily inoperable, and only three days into official operation. Nice.

But not as nice as lunch. I'd already enjoyed dinner at Tutta Bella's other locations in Columbia City and Wallingford, and although I prefer Columbia City for its atmosphere, the new location is also worthy.

If I could, I would eat the Insalata di Mista (fresh field greens, sweet red onions, white beans, matchstick carrots, kalamata olives, house roasted red peppers, white balsamic viniagrette and optional crumbled gorgonzola) every single day. I love that salad more than words can say. But I have to always share it, because otherwise I would be too full to savor the exquisite Neapolitan-style pizza.

On this occasion, we shared the Pizza Bianca (extra virgin olive oil, roasted garlic, oregano, roasted onions, formaggi della case, goat cheese, Grana Padano and the optional rosemary ham) and the Mediterranea (Pomodoro San Marzano, formaggi della casa, goat cheese, herb mushrooms, eggplant, fresh basil, kalamata olives and Grana Padano). I preferred the Mediterranea, but my heart still belongs to the first pizza I ever had at Tutta Bella, a September special featuring figs and a balsamic reduction. Divine, truly.

Their tiramisu (serves 2!) is out of this world, but I went for the affogato (scoop of gelato served with a double shot of Attibassi espresso). On my last trip, I followed our server's recommendation and poured the espresso over a scoop of cinnamon gelato. That flavor wasn't on the menu at this time (or this location), so I went with chocolate. Good...but the cinnamon was so much better. Mmmmm...Tutta Bella.

*For the record, in case anyone is wondering, although in our hearts the S.L.U.T. will always be, well, you know...that is no longer its official name. As soon as the horror of it's unfortunate acronym (giggle) set in, the name was promptly changed to "South Lake Union Streetcar." The name has since morphed to "Seattle Streetcar." Yawn.

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