Walter Mencken 6:15 p.m., Feb. 28
Food Truck Lunch: Red Oven Pizza
I first encountered Red Oven Pizza, Justin Burlingame’s mobile Pizza Napoletano truck, at a Green Flash Brewery tasting event, but he can be seen at the Solana Beach, University City and Oceanside farmer’s markets, as well as regular stops on the local brewery circuit.
His wood-fired, Italian made Mugnaini Mobile Oven sits atop a sleek, candy apple red trailer. It's a grand-looking thing, and hits temps of 900+ degrees.
For Justin, pizza making is all about the dough. His Vera Pizza Napoletana is mixed entirely by hand, using Guisto’s organic 00 flour, and has a long, slow rise before shaping, topping and baking.
My Pizza Parma ($9) had a beautifully bubbled crust that was just slightly chewy, tender under its spare, protective coating of tomato sauce, crisp underneath where it made contact with the oven floor. The edges of the prosciutto di parma were frizzled to a crumbly brown goodness; thicker, chunkier pieces of salumi curled up and sizzled. Just a sprinkling of lightly caramelized, milky mozzarella and some nutty, slightly bitter arugula balanced the saltiness of the meat. It made me slow down, relax and enjoy, which is really the point of eating good food.
It’s hard to believe that someone can make a pizza this enjoyable in a mobile unit. One more reason to love food trucks.
Vegetarian and gluten free options are available. Schedule available through the usual social media.