Pizzaiolo founder Charlie Hallowell was raised in suburban Connecticut on a modest diet of TV dinners and Chef Boyardee. As Pizzaiolo’s website explains, through some completely unexplainable, miraculous twist of fate, he found himself working in the Chez Panisse kitchen, where, for the first time, he felt engaged and enlivened by his job, and the intellectual life that permeated the culture there.
After eight years, Hallowell set out on his own, determined to make sure that about 98 percent of the time he would buy only locally grown, organic, seasonal meat and produce (he uses organic flour milled in Oakland), sourced from small farmers and ranchers he trusts.
Pizzaiolo changes the menu daily to reflect what they’re getting, so nailing down a signature pie is tough (the Margherita is one of their most popular, and there’s a marinara), but with ingredients like potato, pancetta, summer squash, rapini, wild nettles, and gremolata, and add-ons like house-made sausage, Calabrian peppers, and farm egg, you can be sure any of the seven other pies will feature interesting combos. Pro tip: Swing by in the morning and you may be able to score one of the city’s most underrated doughnuts.
— Arthur Bovino, 101 Best Pizzas in America 2015, 8/6/2015