3/07/2013 12:16:00 PM

Field Trip: Elizabeth Falkner’s Brooklyn Pizzeria

San Franciscans are still mourning Elizabeth Falkner’s relocation to Brooklyn to open a neopolitan pizzeria called Krescendo - a surprise for a chef who made giant strides for our city’s dessert culture with her Citizen Cake brand. Open just over three months, Krescendo has been well-received by New York critics and customers. Her gutsy and admittedly risky decision to make pizza in a city where pie aficionados run rampant has luckily resulted in a breakthrough.

And it’s well-deserved - the Neopolitan pies come out of the oven with beautiful leopard spotting and a wonderful interplay between crispy and chewy. Of course, it only feels right to come here and order the pizza called Californication, a Golden State tribute with mozzarella, goat cheese, walnut arugula pesto, padron peppers, prosciutto, arugula and honey. But another highlight is her Finocchio Flower Power, a concoction of panna, braised fennel, fennel sausage, fennel fronds, provolone, Calabrese chili powder, and flori di finocchio that won Falkner first place in last year’s Caputo Cup in Naples.

The biggest shock to a San Franciscan dining at Krescendo is the fact that dessert, once Falkner’s main calling card, is a minimal part of the menu. In fact, there are currently just four options: Housemade gelato, pistachio and bitter chocolate cannoli, a cacao nib tartufo with candied hazelnuts and a cassata made with ricotta creme, pistachio sponge and tangerine sorbetto. While it’s wonderful to see Falkner reinvent herself, surely a little more sugar wouldn’t detract.

Back in SF, Falkner’s former Citizen Cake space is now home to the second outpost of Turkish restaurant Troya. Meanwhile, the location of Falkner’s defunct Orson restaurant is still ostensibly up for grabs.


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