Browsing Tag

pizza parlour

Bars, London, Restaurants

Voodoo Ray’s Late Night Pizza – Dalston, London

At last…the famous New York pizza slice has finally come to London at brand new Dalston pizza joint, Voodoo Ray’s.

Just a few doors down from its sister venue Dalston Superstore, Voodoo Ray’s serves 14 different gourmet slices (or whole pizza at an enormous 22-inches) with Frozen Margaritas, craft beers and an impressive range of soft drinks in a rough-luxe canteen setting.  If you like Paris’ Pink Flamingo and Roberta’s in Brooklyn, Voodoo Ray’s is an absolute must.

Just order your slices and drinks at the counter, sit down and within a few minutes they are brought to the table, after a quick firing in the pizza oven.  Slices are served simply on disposable paper plates, just as they should be, and you can finish them with some chili oil, dried Parmesan, chili flakes and black pepper.

I ordered the delicious Cabbage Patch Kid – savoy cabbage, bacon, tomato sauce, mozzarella (£4.20).  The base was thin, crispy and authentically Italian (made with 00 flour) and covered with just the right amount of slow-cooked tomato sauce and creamy fresh mozzarella.  Savoy cabbage is a surprisingly perfect pizza topping and it went well with the small strips of thick bacon.

Steven went for The Meat Is On – minced steak, pepperoni, ham, pancetta, mozzarella, tomato sauce (£4.20).  It was a scrumptious meat feast without the usual oiliness and toppings were high quality and plentiful.

For round two, I wanted to try a Regular Slice, but they had just run out, so I couldn’t resist another tasty Cabbage Patch Kid – well, there are many more occasions to work through the menu.  Steven went for a slice of Got Beef – minced steak, béchamel, aubergine, mozzarella, tomato sauce (£4.20).  This pizza version of a moussaka was covered in well-seasoned minced steak, a slice of soft roasted aubergine and a good drizzle of creamy béchamel.

The pizza slices are affordably priced at £3.50-£4.20 and drinks are surprisingly cheap, so you can drop by for a quick and easy dinner or have a boozy pizza party with friends without breaking the bank.  Arrive extra late and you will be rewarded with a special Full Moon pizza topped with bacon dust and mayonnaise – served only after midnight.

As expected from the people behind Dalston Superstore, the music at Voodoo Ray’s is brilliant, with a bit of Smashing Pumpkins and New York disco while we were there.  We heard rumblings from the mysterious Dance Tunnel downstairs, which has already hosted parties.  Rumour has it that the tunnel stretches all the way to Dalston Superstore.  Unlikely, but how awesome would a Dalston disco pizza tunnel be!

Voodoo Ray’s – 95 Kingsland High Street, London, E8 2PB

Paris, Restaurants

Punk Rock Pizza at Pink Flamingo – Paris

Parisians love a good food revolution (just see the neo-bistro revolution at Le Fooding) and Pink Flamingo have certainly revolutionised the humble pizza!

Jamie Young and Marie Ravel opened a tiny pizza parlour just off the Canal Saint-Martin and since Pink Flamingo has brought gourmet oddball pizza to Paris’ hip neighbourhoods – the Marais, Aligre, Montmartre and downtown Berlin.

In the summer, you can try out the Pink Flamingo ‘pink-nik’.  Just order your pizza at the counter, take a pink balloon and find a spot on the canal, then they’ll bring it over on a bicycle.

But what’s so unusual about the pizza?  Rather than the tired old ‘Cappriciosa’ and ‘Quatre-Saisons’, Pink Flamingo pizzas are named presumably in homage of the owners’ favourite folk.

There’s ‘La Bjork’ with smoked salmon and crème fraiche, a paella pizza hybrid named ‘L’Almodovar’ and the pizza of the moment, the ‘Obama’  topped with grilled bacon and pineapple chutney.

We visited the original rue Bichat joint, just a block from the Canal Saint-Martin and conveniently, Le Citizen Hotel, where we were staying.  After ordering two pizza at the take-out counter, we went back out into the restaurant, armed with cutlery and a pizza cutter – god help any potential muggers outside Pink Flamingo!

With checkered table cloths and neon pink lighting and lack of central heating, Pink Flamingo feels like an underground bunker diner, where munching on oddball pizza feels slightly illicit.

Staff are friendly and laid-back and our conversation was a schizophrenic mix of French and English words – the easiest way to get by in Paris.  They were dressed for the winter chill with woolly jumpers and bobble hats, as it seems their chosen method of delivery is by bicycle.

Everything is chilled out and simple at Pink Flamingo and you’re left to chat and eat your pizzas in peace while the pizza chefs dash around next door.

I noticed that Pink Flamingo also offer their own beer with the Pink Flamingo logo, which would make a pretty cool souvenir.  Also spotted was the super cool spray can ‘fire extinguisher’, only to be used by graffiti artists!

Our pizzas arrived quickly and we ordered La Che (14,5 Euros) and La Macias (15,5 Euros), then split the two.

‘La Che’ is topped with Cuban pork (marinated in garlic, lime, coriander and spring onion for 24 hours) and banana plantain chips.  The pork was juicy and succulent and the banana plantain chips were more roasted than deep fried and added a lovely sweet flavour to the pizza.

‘La Macias’ was my favourite, covered in tagine-style marinated chicken and preserved lemon, finished off with green and violet olives.  It worked surprisingly well with regular mozzarella and tomato sauce and the base was thin and crispy – made using organic dough.

Both pizzas were subtly flavoured, generously adorned with toppings and quite not as wacky as they sound.

Pink Flamingo is perfect for grabbing a quick pizza with friends and I’ve already picked my spot next to the canal for my summer ‘pink-nik’.

Pink Flamingo, 67 rue Bichat, Canal St-Martin, 75010 Paris.