Friday, May 8, 2009

contact high

when i went to dopo the first time, i didn't order pizza...and i was starting to realize that might have been a huge mistake.  this is what somebody wrote:

best pizza in Oakland
I've tried them all and Dopo is the best

that's a bold statement!  i was skeptical, but intrigued.  pizza was on my mind for an entire week, so i decided to pick one up on my way home.  it was a white pizza (which just means it doesn't have red sauce), topped with house made pancetta, asparagus and thinly sliced red onions.  i watched the cook check the bottom crust to make sure it was brown.  she pulled it out with a pizza peel, sprinkled shredded white cheese, cut it into slices and put it in the box. 

i got in my car and the aroma immediately filled every breath of air.  i made it exactly one block before i had to pull over.  somehow, i remembered to take this picture before i grabbed a slice and shoved a corner in my mouth.  

with wide eyes, i exclaimed, "WOW!"

the salty pancetta brought out the sweetness from the asparagus.  
i sped home, rushed in the door, poured myself a glass of wine, plopped down on the couch and gently placed the pizza box on the table in front of me.  i grabbed another slice.  the chewy texture of the cured meat highlighted the tender slices of vegetable.
the crust was so thin and crackly on the bottom - and chewy on the edges.  the edges didn't have enough flavor.  maybe they should add more salt to the dough.
after a while, i noticed that i was moaning after every bite.
this reminded me of a book i read last summer, eat pray love.  i raced to the bookshelf and grabbed the book, glancing at the pizza every couple seconds to make sure it was ok.
"so sophie and i have come to pizzaria da michele, and these pies we have just ordered - one for each of us - are making us lose our minds.  i love my pizza so much, in fact, that i have come to believe in my delirium that my pizza might actually love me, in return.  i am having a relationship with this pizza, almost an affair.  meanwhile, sophie is practically in tears over hers, she's having a metaphysical crisis about it."
yes!  that's exactly what i feel like.  i'm delirious!  i'm high!  i'm high on pizza!  i take another bite.
i had to call a friend to share what just happened.
"i'm high on pizza!"
he laughed.   i explain that pizza was invented in naples and i read the passage from the book to see if that will help him understand.  he laughed again.  
"i have to go to naples!"
"you cannot go to naples just to eat pizza."
my face drops into a frown as i try to think about which friend i should have called in a moment like this.  i'm having a revelation.  this is not a game.  i don't need to be discouraged right now.  i need to be uplifted.  i need to fly and soar and frolic.  i wonder if pizzaria da michele is still...  what did he say?  how can i concentrate when this beautiful, lovely, gorgeous pizza is just sitting there, patiently waiting for me???  what?  he has to get off the phone?  yes!!!  i mean...
"ok, talk to you later."

without wasting a nanosecond, i dive into the pizza box again and resurface with another triangle of love.  this time, i noticed the pepper in the pancetta.  my tongue was so happy, it was dancing in my mouth. 
at this point, i wasn't even hungry anymore. but i couldn't stop.  just.  one.  more.  slice.
finally, i flopped back on the couch and looked at the lonely slice of pizza that was left in the box.  "did i really just eat almost an entire pizza?  by myself?  oh well.  it was delicious."  

and that was the last thing i remembered before i fell asleep on the couch, smiling and dreaming about naples.


  1. hahaha.. you are a fool! you should have called me, punk, I not only would have supported your trip to naples, I would have been knocking on ur door 5 minutes later to confirm these shenanigans!

  2. i'll keep that in mind. but we'll have to get a second pizza, just for you....

  3. You remind me of me, reaching for slice upon slice, and just not being able to help yourself. But you know, when pizza is THAT good, you just have to go for it.
    Have not been to Dopo yet. But after those high praises for the pizza, I must make a trip there.

  4. Triangle of love! That was great!

  5. I love how you made it one block before pulling over! I'm with foodgal, that description alone is making me have to go to dopo... I have that book too on audiobook but haven't listened to it yet.

  6. Great story. I'll keep Dopo in mind when I'm craving for a pizza.

  7. You had me salivating half-way through it. I want Dopo pizza badly!

  8. foodgal - let me know what you think when you go.
    neku - you know me! hehehe
    foodhoe - what book do you have???
    lando - it might be a good spot for a date. :)
    niyi - you should try it!

  9. I can't believe there's a place in Oakland with pizza that good and I haven't tried it yet. I'm going this weekend and will report back, Thanks!