Saturday, March 11, 2017

Toss Pizza: New York Style Pizza in South Austin

Toss Pizza neon sign
There are no shortage of pizza places in Austin, but last summer welcomed Toss Pizza into the mix. This New York-style pizza place is at 2901 South First Street, and offers on-site parking and an outdoor, dog-friendly seating area.

Somewhere between a restaurant and a bar, there was a laid-back vibe on a recent weeknight. Multiple televisions are positioned throughout, but fortunately they were not blaring. Each day has a different drink/happy hour special, and there's also a window to the kitchen where you can watch them toss pizza dough.

I started with beer and my friend and I split the garlic knots. Looking back at the menu, it says "choice of garlic butter, marinara or ranch." I realize now, the waiter didn't ask our preference, and just brought all three sauces with the order. Except the ranch wasn't ranch; it tasted more like an alfredo, though it congealed quickly, making me now wonder if it was the beer cheese that's mentioned in the pretzel appetizer. But it tasted more like an alfredo than a beer cheese. Oh well. The garlic butter was my favorite of the three.  Who doesn't like soft chewy bread and melted butter?
Toss Pizza garlic knots
Toss makes big 20" pies. That's the only size. Fortunately, you can order a HALF pie. So we picked our own toppings with sausage and roast garlic, though some of their specialty pies sound delicious. As you can see, the half pie is still four very large slices, so we each ate one and took one home. I really liked the pizza. It was sort of easier to eat it with a fork and knife, at least initially, but it's also very foldable for those who like to eat their pizza that way.  Crust is pretty thin on the bottom, with a decent edge to it, almost like a Neapolitan. It crisped very nicely in the toaster oven when I reheated it.
Toss Pizza
We also ordered the warm Brussels sprout salad, with beets, pancetta, walnuts, and balsamic. The flavors were fantastic, but the execution was poor. The Brussels were completely soggy, and after a few bites, I just couldn't do it, and we set the tray to the side. I told the waiter, who sort of apologized, but didn't really appear to take any corrective action, and left them on our check. So I was about to leave a little disgruntled when someone who I assume was a manager came over to the table. He said the waiter told him what I said about the Brussels, so he went back to the kitchen to check, and  sure enough, he felt they were sub par. He apologized and gave us a card for 10% off our next visit. I felt vindicated, and appreciated the manager's efforts, and that of the waiter for reporting it.

You can order online for pick up or delivery; this will come in handy. I will happily return to Toss for the pizza. So while I hope the kitchen gets the Brussels perfected, the pizza is pretty much perfect as is.