Restaurant Review: Home Slice Pizza

SoCo Dining Spots

22) Home Slice Pizza

1415 S. Congress, 444-PIES

Monday, Wednesday-Thursday, 11:30am-11pm; Friday-Saturday, 11:30am-midnight; Sunday, noon-10pm

www.homeslicepizza.com

From the moment Home Slice opened its doors, it has been packed. As you walk in (assuming you aren't just grabbing a slice from the convenient sidewalk "slice window"), you are hit by a wall of warm, pizza-redolent air and noise. Servers whisk by carrying pitchers of beer as they weave through the waiting crowd. Behind the counter, the pizza bakers toss wheels of dough overhead, and the red-toned interior causes an almost instant sense of familiarity and relaxation. At last. Genuine, hand-tossed New York-style pizza made in an independent neighborhood pizzeria, by folks who know how it's done. The crust is crisp, yet chewy, with those wonderful occasional air bubbles where the cheese meets the crust. The perfect amount of tomato sauce. The correct amount of (real Italian) cheese. The toppings that adorn the pizza are prepared with the same attention to both authenticity and superior quality; in addition to the standard toppings, such as pepperoni or mushrooms, Home Slice offers a variety of "special toppings," including roasted red peppers, anchovies, fresh mozzarella, ricotta, and even clams. Nothing complements pizza like a salad, and on that score, Home Slice hits the ball out of the park again: generous platters of antipasto, or Insalata Caprese (fresh tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil), as well as Greek salad, Caesar salad, house salad, spinach salad, and pear gorgonzola salad are on the menu, and all are served with a fresh homemade roll. Italian subs are also available, both hot (meatball, eggplant parmesan) and cold (Italian meats and cheeses), as well as fresh-baked calzone, and it's all just like they do it in the Big City. After your meal, you can have cappuccino, espresso, latte, or coffee, and some of the finest Italian desserts around. I nominate the cannoli for Best Dessert in Austin right here and now!

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