[Hyannis, MA] Pizza Barbone

I judge all pizza by the standard of the one I had in Bardolino on Lake Garda about 10 years ago. There have been many since that fell well short of that one and a few that almost match it. The ones we ate at Pizza Barbone are in the latter category.

It’s a nice place on Hyannis’ Main Street with efficient staff. And a menu that makes sense with toppings much as you might find in Italy – so no chicken tikka masala or pineapple here. Oh, and a wood fired oven that cooks them in a couple of minutes or so. I asked the chef about the oven – they use kiln dried hardwood so it gets to temperature quickly – and that means hitting 1000 degrees Fahrenheit (or nearly 550 Celsius if, like me, that’s how you calculate things).

As to those pizzas, one of us took the day’s special – toppings of morels, asparagus and cheese. No tomato sauce. It’s a very thin affair, not overloaded with the toppings, so the taste of the base isn’t lost. As mentioned, it’s cooked quickly so the dough is crispy but still nicely chewy. They make a point of saying they cook pizza in the Neapolitan style, so the centre is not quite set and they recommend eating it with a knife and fork. I’m British so I never consider eating pizza any other way. This is just excellent – absolutely bang-on for seasonality. I rather missed having a tomato sauce though.

My partner ordered the lunch special. That’s a small (8 inch) pizza) with a side salad. Margherita was one of four available as the special. A pretty much perfect balance of classic flavours here – good tomato sauce, spiked quite heavily with basil. Salad was good as well – leaves together with thin shavings of fennel, radish & carrot.

There was no need for dessert – other than greed. And greed is always going to get the better of both if us if cannolo is on the menu. This was an excellent version – crisp, tasty pastry, stuffed with slightly sweetened ricotta with a decent hint of orange and a decorative sprinkle of chocolate.

Absolutely cracking lunch.