4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Bruno's third year

University Heights fancy pizza place of record can claim success despite a tough locale

I am amazed that Pizzeria Bruno settled not for survival in a terrible location, but held on for the outright win. I dropped in during a weeknight dinner service and it was jamming! The only spot I could sit was at the bar, where I was graced with some conversation from the obviously busy staff. It’s easy to ignore a solo diner since we don’t spend a lot of money, but I’m always pleased when somebody goes out of his or her way to make me feel welcome as a singleton.

When Bruno opened, I prophesied a short tenure. The pizza was good but the dark, cracked-out sidewalks on Park Boulevard didn’t bode well. Plus, they opened right at the time when businesses were failing by the truckload. I gave it less than a year.

It’s been three and Bruno is still going strong. I counted two servers, two bussers, and two cooks working dinner, which is not the skeleton-crew of a struggling restaurant! I struck up a conversation and I gather that a lot of devoted customers are keeping the place busy. Indeed, the dressed up clientele that taking their leisurely time and noshing on Naples-style pizza looked liked a solid, dependable customer base. There were a lot of guys in pointy, Italian shoes and women in expensive jeans, which are exactly the kind of people you want coming in for Euro-chic pizza.

Little, if anything, has changed for Bruno in the last three years. Rather than castigate the restaurant for that, I want to hold it up as a counter-example to what I was talking about yesterday. I had a salsicce pizza topped with fennel sausage, mozzarella cheese, and a touch of broccoli rabe. The soft, chewy crust had been blistered by the blazing oven so the dough was just barely cooked. Splashed with a little of the house “spicy oil” (which is truly spicy and deserves a moderate touch), it was as fine a pizza as I’ve had.

In light of the world’s refusal to end today, I’d like to point to Pizzeria Bruno as a rare success story in the restaurant game, where the odds are seldom in anyone’s favor and making a crappy location work is a great accomplishment. If anybody out there has yet to try Bruno’s pizza, do yourselves a favor and go have some in case the world does come to a smoldering conclusion sometime in the near future.

4207 Park Boulevard
619-260-1311
Tu-Th 5-10
Friday 4-10
Saturday 12-10
Sunday 12-9

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

Brenda Spencer used a .22

If Encinitas won't protect trees, who will?

I am amazed that Pizzeria Bruno settled not for survival in a terrible location, but held on for the outright win. I dropped in during a weeknight dinner service and it was jamming! The only spot I could sit was at the bar, where I was graced with some conversation from the obviously busy staff. It’s easy to ignore a solo diner since we don’t spend a lot of money, but I’m always pleased when somebody goes out of his or her way to make me feel welcome as a singleton.

When Bruno opened, I prophesied a short tenure. The pizza was good but the dark, cracked-out sidewalks on Park Boulevard didn’t bode well. Plus, they opened right at the time when businesses were failing by the truckload. I gave it less than a year.

It’s been three and Bruno is still going strong. I counted two servers, two bussers, and two cooks working dinner, which is not the skeleton-crew of a struggling restaurant! I struck up a conversation and I gather that a lot of devoted customers are keeping the place busy. Indeed, the dressed up clientele that taking their leisurely time and noshing on Naples-style pizza looked liked a solid, dependable customer base. There were a lot of guys in pointy, Italian shoes and women in expensive jeans, which are exactly the kind of people you want coming in for Euro-chic pizza.

Little, if anything, has changed for Bruno in the last three years. Rather than castigate the restaurant for that, I want to hold it up as a counter-example to what I was talking about yesterday. I had a salsicce pizza topped with fennel sausage, mozzarella cheese, and a touch of broccoli rabe. The soft, chewy crust had been blistered by the blazing oven so the dough was just barely cooked. Splashed with a little of the house “spicy oil” (which is truly spicy and deserves a moderate touch), it was as fine a pizza as I’ve had.

In light of the world’s refusal to end today, I’d like to point to Pizzeria Bruno as a rare success story in the restaurant game, where the odds are seldom in anyone’s favor and making a crappy location work is a great accomplishment. If anybody out there has yet to try Bruno’s pizza, do yourselves a favor and go have some in case the world does come to a smoldering conclusion sometime in the near future.

4207 Park Boulevard
619-260-1311
Tu-Th 5-10
Friday 4-10
Saturday 12-10
Sunday 12-9

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Comments
0

Be the first to leave a comment.

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories Fishing Report — What’s getting hooked from ship and shore From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town The Gonzo Report — Making the musical scene, or at least reporting from it Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Outdoors — Weekly changes in flora and fauna Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Street Style — San Diego streets have style Surf Diego — Real stories from those braving the waves Theater — On stage in San Diego this week Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close