Pizzeria Libretto is known in Toronto for their amazing execution of Neapolitan-style pizzas. But did you know their appies and desserts are also really good?
It took me a while to become a fan (after my 5th visit in 3 years) and come to terms with their pizza style. My first experience was not great due to bad service, but the few following were flawless. Being a declared Terroni
pizza lover, I found my taste buds unaccustomed to the texture of Neapolitan pizzas, so I never brought myself to give this place a second look. Defaulting always to white pizzas, like the Duck Confit, I was never really introduced to Libretto’s secret tomato sauce; until one day I deviated from my choice, and found their pizzas to be quite succulent in their own way, including their incredible appetizers and desserts.
Ricotta Gnocchi Fritti
For starters, literally, their buttermilk calamari seating on a bed of red pepper-almond sauce is crazy good. The calamari is perfectly dusted in breadcrumbs, plated in a beautiful pyramid and tender on bite. Their ricotta gnocchi fritti, like the calamari, is a simple deep-fried creation of ricotta cheese and gnocchi nubs ready to dip in a crema fresca sauce layered with rosemary and chives. The breading on these nubs is rather sweet and lighter on bite than that of the calamari, but just as good.
Libretto’s traditional take on a prosciutto-arugula pizza marks the beginning of an era of Neapolitan pizzas for me.
Ontario Prosciutto & Arugula Pizza
The secret of these pizzas is found in Libretto’s tomato sauce – light, smooth and full of flavour – and the cooking process of the thin-crust delicacies, 90 seconds by clock in the hot wood-fire oven, with the pizza arriving with heat bubbles that pop open as you eat and dig through your pizza, or that crush as you fold it with your hands to hold it all together. Ingredients used on this pizza are not only fresh but also of good quality.
The only white pizza on the menu, and my good ol’ favourite, the Duck Confit Pizza is my favourite on the menu.
Duck Confit White Pizza
Called white pizza because it has no tomato sauce, this pizza goes head-to-head with the C’t Mang from Terroni
for the use of sweet and salty ingredients. In the case of Libretto, this pizza comes oozing with mozzarella covered with duck pieces, bosc pear and rosemary. A happy combination of flavours and ingredients that just work well together and make a symphony in ones palate.
And beyond the pizzas, there is always good dessert if you venture into the land of the Chocolate-Amaretto Budino.
Budino means pudding in Italian. In this case, is a rich creamy chocolate and amaretto dessert layered inside a jar with small pieces of peach, fresh cream and crunchy hazelnuts bites. It almost seemed like such an indulgence to be eating the budino with a spoon right out of a jar.
Pizzeria Libretto is such a hot spot that at 5pm the place is already packed with families, couples and groups storming in the brick-wall decorated venue, with thick wooden tables filled with baskets of delicious bread and bottles of olive oil.
Until next time Foodies!
Location: 221 Ossington Street, Toronto, ON
Menu items: Ricotta Gnocchi Fritti, Buttermilk Calamari, Ontario Proscuitto & Arugula Pizza, Duck Confit White Pizza and Chocolate-Amaretto Budino