The most primitive attraction in North Scottsdale may be Lamp's pizza oven.
Covered in an armor of shiny red tiles, it transforms bolts of wood into flickering flames and blistering heat, fervently churning out rustic pies with bready crusts charred and crisp at the rim, thin and soft in the center.
The result is nearly 20 varieties of red and white artisan 12-inch pies, delicate yet able to be laden with top-notch ingredients like San Marzano tomatoes, hand-stretched mozzarella, and sausages prepared by DeFalco's Italian Deli & Grocery in Scottsdale.
The pizzas probably won't be causing Chris Bianco any sleepless nights, but they are some of the Valley's best.
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Here's an excerpt from this week's review:
"Going the more traditional route with Pilato's pizza selections is gratifying, but there certainly isn't anything wrong with taking a more inventive flavor path. In fact, it may be what he does best. His Dirty Little York pie, which brings together spicy sopressata, sharp provolone, heady roasted artichoke hearts and red peppers, and thin strands of red onion, is more sophisticated than its moniker might lead you to believe. Its well-balanced array of flavors is an exercise in pizza elegance. And if it's spiciness you crave, you could do worse than a journey to southern Italy's Calabria region in the form of a near-glowing orange pie called the Kicker. If the fiery Calabrian peppers and cayenne pepper-laced salami aren't enough to coax a bead or two of sweat from your brow, there's an optional side of Calabrian oil whose hell-hot bite should do the trick."
Hungry for more? Read my full review of Lamp Wood Oven Pizzeria in North Scottsdale here.