The Pizza Library: A novel way to eat pizza

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23 Jul The Pizza Library: A novel way to eat pizza

badge2The Pizza Library is not your usual pizza parlour – or restaurant for that matter.

Bookshelves stacked to overflowing, upbeat swing music and wait staff wearing top hats are the first things you notice. It’s a chilly winter night and the small, cosy restaurant is full even at 6pm. A fire and gas heaters are roaring away by the tables outside.

Every aspect of the restaurant reflects the name. Reading the menu, I feel like I’m perusing the shelves of a library – Charlotte’s Web, Hamlet, Little Women, The Great Gatsby, Deathly Hallows.

We settle on Hunger Games and Scrooge and place our order at the counter before picking seats closest to the gas heater outside.

Our seats look to have been salvaged from an old bus and covered in loud, retro, floral fabric. The tables are rustic and wooden.

Inside, old leather suitcases hang from the roof and bookshelves overflowing with old books take up every inch of available wall space.

The upbeat swing music gives the place a fun vibe. The counter is a piano and the staff in their top hats look as though they could all pound out a tune. As well as the usual, the drinks fridge is full of English beers I’ve never heard of and a selection of other unusual beverages.

We opt for an Aroha Sparkling Rhubarb and a Sparkling Feijoa. The feijoa tastes like exactly that. I struggle to taste the rhubarb in the other, but the drink is pleasant.

Our food arrives quickly and looks amazing. The restaurant is mainly takeaway, so the pizzas are served in takeaway boxes – handy for taking the remains of the huge pizzas home. We picked the small size, but still they are as big as most large pizzas. The bases are thin and crispy and the toppings are generous.

The Hunger Games pizza comes covered in rosemary and red wine-marinated venison, caramelised onions, capsicums, feta, mozzarella and plum sauce. It’s a great combination and the mouthfuls of plum and feta really make the pizza. Even better is the Scrooge – roast lamb, caramelised onions, capsicums, sundried tomatoes, fresh basil, mozzarella and hummus. The flavours are strong and there seems to be a hint of cumin.

For a quick, casual meal out (or takeaways), the Pizza Library is perfect. The food and the atmosphere are great and the prices are reasonable.

Bay of Plenty Times

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