Last night to cap off my weekend pizza frenzy, I made it over to
Salvation Pizza is located in a refurbished house, so it’s mostly on-street parking (unless the parking area next door is in fair play). On Sunday evening it was easy to park right out in front. They have a nice deck, which in warmer months must be great as you don’t hear traffic from Guadalupe.
Inside, the atmosphere is Austin-retrofit-house-hipster, which is OK by me. There are three dining areas, presumably a legacy from the former house layout. The room on the right had two families (i.e. children) and I don’t know if that was a conscious effort to make that a family area or not but I appreciated it (and avoided it). I sat in the main room, near the ordering counter where throughout the evening, several people came in to pick up to go orders. The third room is past the stairway in the back of the house/restaurant.
I ordered the house salad and a #1 pie – a white pizza with tomatoes, basil and garlic. The salad was fine, nothing special, with a standard sun-dried tomato dressing, but I would have enjoyed the whole salad a bit more if was in a bowl or they included a roll to work with. It took about 20 minutes for the pizza to arrive. It was truly a thin crust, that was both light and crisp. It was just slightly chewy but still rigid enough not to sag much when picked up. (I think folding pizza for eating is a sin.) The toppings were fine, very generous on the (pre-processed from a jar?) garlic with large, thin tomato slices. One issue was the basil (mostly full leaves) was a bit singed which isn’t the best way to get the full flavor out. I’d recommend chopping the basil to release more flavor and scent as well as taking the extra step of adding it to the pie in the last 90 seconds of baking. (Or something like that.)
The staff was very friendly and relaxed, they were busy keeping tables organized, answering the phone and filling to go orders. Along with some live Johnny Cash playing, it was a pleasant place to be. (I forgot to ask or check if they had wifi access.)
Would I go back to Salvation Pizza? Yes, and I’d try another of their ten or so different featured pies, or perhaps devise my own from a large list of ingredients.
Salvation’s #1 is the new consensus favorite for my vegetarian daughters and me. It’s so good that we’ve even cut back on our long-standing custom of ordering take-out at Conan’s and stopping by Vulcan for a video while we’re there — although my eight year old keeps wanting us to order a sympathy pie from Conan’s anyway.
The explosion of indie pizza joint is awesome. I still haven’t hit Eastside Pies or Salvation yet, but of the two South Congress joints, I like Southside Flying better than Homeslice. Their Sundried Tomato Pesto pizza is awesome, although the middle tends to get a bit soggy at times. It’s on South Congress almost to Oltorf, just before Nueva Onda and run by a longtime Guero’s employee, Bill. Have either of you tried it?