I love it when you reach that stage living somewhere where you have reliable and local go-to restaurants for every cuisine. We have our favourite chippy sorted, our favourite Chinese, our favourite Mexican (all coincidentally on the same street) but we’ve been missing a great pizzeria. Until recently that is when I discovered Pizza Union.
Housed in an industrial style unit flooded with light and with minimalist neon decor, the Spitalfields branch of Pizza Union offers speedily cooked (3 minutes!) pizzas from a wood fire oven.
This is self-serve, you order from boards hanging above the till point, take a buzzer, find a stool to perch on at one of the long communal tables and wait expectedly for the buzzer to go off, when it is then you head up to collect your pizzas. A great system, unless you visit on your own for a quick bite, as I did during Open House London weekend, when you face the debate as to whether to leave your bag etc at your table (committing the cardinal sin that you get warned about the minute you move to London – taking your eye off your stuff) or taking it all up with you. Not a problem when I went the other weekend with my boyfriend, not only did he do all the fetching and carrying duties but we also went quite early in the day and so the place was quiet, albeit still not empty.
We ordered a slightly modified Giardino (mozzarella, mixed peppers, black olives, mushrooms and onions but minus the artichoke) and a Calabria (mozzarella, mascarpone, n’duja spicy sausage, rocket). The bases are perfectly crispy and thin with a generous helping of toppings and gooey cheese. Plus, they’re totally bargainous, ranging from £3.95 for a Margherita up to £6.50 for some of the options. Quick, tasty, cheap – what more can you ask for?
From the start I’d had my eye on a warm dough ring for dessert and my boyfriend took very little persuading to also try one. The Classico for him (Nutella and mascarpone) and the Caramello for me (salted caramel, peanuts, chocolate and mascarpone). His Classico was the winner in my view, I didn’t get a salted caramel hit from mine, it being more peanut than salted caramel or chocolate, although I felt like both could have been elevated to that next level by a good dollop of gelato.
Within a week of visiting, my boyfriend has already suggested that we have to return at some point soon. A definite sign that Pizza Union may well become a new favourite of ours.