The little village I live in is great because there are about 20 restaurants within walking distance, everything from a family diner to a high end steak house. Up until about a year ago there was no classic Italian restaurant. Then Alessandro Pirozzi opened his namesake eatery, Pirozzi. Alessandro has several restaurants in the area but this is the only one with a brick oven imported from Naples.
Not only do delicious pizzas come from the brick oven, but also perfectly seared steaks and chops, that’s what happens at 900 degrees! The menu has a diverse sampling of salads, appetizers, and entrees. The space is intimate with a lovely open air feel due to the folding doors opening onto the Coast Highway.
We were there on a recent evening with another couple. As we often do, we started with a Margherita pizza, it’s the perfect size for four or five to share as an appetizer. I am guilty of ordering the kale salad every visit, because it is always fresh and the vinaigrette is light and flavorful. If you want just a small salad, split this with your partner. The other couple shared the “Of Course We Have a Caesar” salad.
For the entrees we all ordered seafood, two orders of Linguine with Clams (my husband’s absolute favorite), an order of the Cioppino (an Italian Bouillabaisse), and the special of the evening, John Dory served with roasted cauliflower.
The linguine and clams was notable because of the quantity of whole clams on the dish. They are generous with the portions. And the flavors are just what you expect from Linguine con Vongole. (Check out our Gr8 Recipe for Linguine with Clams on this site.)
My John Dory was as beautiful to behold as it was delicious. In fact, it looked like a work of art with a slash of pureed beets going across the dish. The fish was tender and flaky with a light beurre blanc sauce. The roasted cauliflower was a tad dry, but the flavor was the nutty sweetness that’s expected when roasting this versatile vegetable.
The Cioppino brought to mind the bay of Naples with the variety of fresh seafood in the tomato base.
Since we indulged in the pizza at the beginning and enjoyed 2 bottles of Italian red during the repast, we decided to forgo dessert this time.
This remains one of our favorite restaurants, if you are ever in the Orange County, California area, do try to check it out for dinner.
Have a Gr8 Day!
Pirozzi — 2929 East Coast Highway — Corona Del Mar, CA 92625 — 949.675.2932