Monday, April 11, 2011

Vivona's Pizzeria

We had a slice of pizza with our dinner at Vivona's Pizzeria the other night, but the slice that we shared was the high point. It was good. But the rest of our dinner was mediocre at best. I was disappointed overall.

We arrived late on a Saturday afternoon to find only one other table occupied, but by the time we left, there were four or five tables full. Well, the place has only been open two months, so maybe people have not found it yet. I did notice several take-out orders going out while we were there. Hopefully their pizza good, and much better than their meals.

Our waitress was, I'd say, rather new to her job. She was helpful and courteous and checked in on us a number of times, but still could have used a bit of polish, it's the little things that add up. Still, for a lower priced pizza joint, she did well. We asked about a few menu items, she had to check on one of them. Well, that's OK, they have a huge menu--and therein, i believe, lies the problem.

Our dinners came with salads, and they arrive promptly.They were average salads, but very fresh. Fresh iceberg lettuce with a few garnishments. The dressing was served in a little container. Now I got the raspberry viniagrette, but in a container that's always a hazard as the oil has usually risen to the top. I did shake it (with a bit of fear and trepidation). It was OK and the salad was tasty. Not much more to say about it.

We ordered a slice of pepperoni pizza as an appetizer--though it came out with our dinner, and two dinners. The slice of pepperoni pizza was actually quite good, nice and hot, a nice oregano flavor in the sauce, and an ample amount of sauce. I'd probably come back just to have the pizza. It was also a very good sized slice. It arrived hot and yummy. I'm sure it was a pre-made slice of cheese pizza with pepperoni added, but still, it was pretty decent pizza.

For his main course, my friend Tommy ordered the Spaghetti and Meatballs. It was a pretty good sized portion. The marinara sauce was pretty decent, nice and fresh taste. The meatballs, while they had a good taste, had an odd texture. It seemed more like a meat paste than ground meat in a ball. Like it had been ground a few too many times, or overworked by quite a bit. The taste was good, but the texture just strange.
After a few questions on the menu items for the waitress, I ordered the Chicken a la Vodka. It was a large portion and served piping hot. It was just OK though. Here's what it seemed like to me. It seemed like a bunch of individual components that were thrown together at the last moment and put together on a dish. As a matter of fact, a bit before we were served, our waitress asked me if i wanted it with broccoli and sun dried tomatoes. I said "yes" but thought to myself "don't they know how to make their dish?"  The penne was a bit lifeless as if it had been held a bit too long in water. The vodka cream sauce was a bit thin and not all that flavorful. The chicken, while nice and tender, had no flavor from the sauce (because i'm sure it first met the sauce moments before they ended up in front of me). The other compenents included sliced ham, peas, onions, and a few other things. The dish could have benefit from a bit of acid, like artichoke hearts or something. It was OK, it just did not come together as a dish.

Both of our portions were huge. We each had enough to take home and eat another meal, so that was good. But i just got the feeling that the extensive menu was too much, too big, trying to please too many people. And so I'll bet all the components are ready, and when ordered, everything is quickly put together, heated up a bit, and then served. Too bad, as it has some potential.

One last note. Our meal could have benefit from some bread. Why no bread? When you have Italian sauces like we did, they beg for some bread to sop up the sauce.

So, overall, I was a bit disappointed. I hope the pizza is much better, and our one split slice seemed to indicate that as the case.
Vivona's Pizzeria on Urbanspoon


  1. can you give the address of the places you visit ?

  2. You can click on the restaurant name in the first sentence of the review--that will take you to their web site. Or click on the "badge" at the end of the review, that will take you to urbanspoon's page for that restaurant where you can find other reviews and directions!

  3. " I'm sure it was a pre-made slice of cheese pizza" This seems odd to say if you don't know as a 100% fact.

  4. When you allow anonymous comments, you get what you pay for.... In my judgement, they made a cheese pizza, then when I asked for pepperoni, they put on some pepperoni and only reheated it. Having ate hundreds or more of pepperoni pizzas in my life, this did not seem to be one where the pepperoni was on it when it was originally cooked. Either they did what I said or made a crappy pepperoni pizza. You try it and see!