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Desserts, Patios, Drinks, Restaurants, Food

Toronto’s first coal-fired restaurant can’t help but keep your eyes on the pies

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Benjamin Mann Aug 12, 2016 12:41 am

Don’t be fooled by the Burger King and the unassuming office entrance. Wrap around the right edge of 106 Front Street East and through the parking lot, you’ll see the 32-seat patio of Angelo’s, a Boston brand implant bringing something new and hot—I’m talking 900 degrees hot—to Toronto’s Italian taste buds.

Angelo's Coal Fired Pizza Toronto

Image: Benjamin Mann

Angelo’s Coal Fired Pizza is not just Toronto’s but Ontario’s first coal-fired restaurant. Owners Joe Rizzo and Jose Geada didn’t make it easy on themselves earning that title. Sure, there was the total overhaul of the 5,000 square foot space, with fresh new floors, walls lined with barn board from Aurora Mennonites, black penny tiles on husky pillars, and Edison light bulbs buzzing a welcoming, yellow glow.

Angelo's Coal Fired Pizza Toronto

Image: Benjamin Mann

But then there’s the oven. Oh, the oven. It weighs 10,000 pounds. That’s almost twice the weight of that elephant you rode in Thailand during your 2 month tour of Southeast Asia. It was delivered from California on a flatbed truck and was installed using a forklift.

Angelo's Coal Fire Oven Pizza Toronto

Image: Benjamin Mann

To be fair, I’ve been going to the gym a lot and they never asked me to help, but even so, it’s hard not to be impressed by the thing. Chances are, you’ll feel the same way about what comes out of it.

Angelo's Coal Fire Oven Pizza Toronto

Image: Benjamin Mann

Burning through 150 pounds of coal day, reaching temperatures of almost 1,000 degrees, the TerraLuxe pops out pies with a pleasant balance; the nicely charred crust gives you a satisfying first-bite-crunch, but then you’re carried through the chew with a soft, doughy texture. That dough, by the way, is secret family recipe.

Among their signature pizzas, you’ll find a fine array of thin-crust pies; a Margherita with buffalo mozzarella, a Michaelangelo with coal-fired meatballs and ricotta cheese, a Meat Lovers with pepperoni, meatball, sausage and bacon, and a Mushroom and Brie with, well, mushroom and brie, just to name a few.

Angelo's Coal Fired Pizza Toronto

Goodfella Pizza (Benjamin Mann)

But when you haul a 10,000 pound oven in from California, you don’t stop at pizza. Angelo’s also coal-fires their focaccia bread, their focaccia croutons, their meatballs, their sandwiches, and their caramelized-onion-drenched chicken wings.

Angelo's Coal Fired Pizza Toronto

Chicken Wings (Benjamin Mann)

And what would an Italian restaurant be without pasta, wine and dessert? Actually, I was going to be really specific and say, “Pizza Nova,” but ya, “not much” works too. At the Front Street location, you’ll also find dishes like Orecchiette Pan, flush with rapini and sausage…

Angelo's Coal Fired Pizza and Pasta Toronto

Image: Benjamin Mann

As well as Strozzapreti Pan, a twizzler-esque heap doused in a refreshing veal ragu…

Angelo's Coal Fired Pizza and Pasta Toronto

Image: Benjamin Mann

The sweet stuff includes a classic tiramisu, soft cheesecake, and (duh) coal fired apple pie. Though you’d be a smidge silly to not try their Nutella mousse bombolone…

Angelo's Coal Fired Pizza Pasta Dessert Toronto

Image: Benjamin Mann

And their salted caramel & pear gelato…

Angelo's Coal Fired Pizza Pasta Dessert Toronto

As for the stronger stuff, Angelo’s boasts a signature cocktail menu of classics like Negorni, Manhattan, and Old Fashioned, but also offer dessert cocktails (read: Tiramisu Martini…seriously) and a selection of Italian liqueurs you’d expect; Amaro, Grappa and Limoncello, etc. From the cellar, you have the choice of over 50 wines, ranging regions of Italy and California all the way to New Zealand and Chile.

Angelo's Coal Fired Pizza Pasta Dessert Toronto

This might be Toronto’s first Angelo’s, but the owners don’t plan for it to be the last. With the flagship location and a Joey’s Bistro in Florida already under Rizzo’s belt, and Burlington’s Nonna’s Cucina already under Geada’s, the two restaurateurs say that this is just one North-of-the-border-notch in the brand’s expanding waistline. Before you swing by for bite, you’ll probably want to stretch yours out too.

Angelo's Coal Fired Pizza Pasta Dessert Bar Toronto

Image: Benjamin Mann


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Benjamin Mann

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