We were back in the North for round 4, Douglasdale, to be specific. Ciro’s markets itself as Italian / Portuguese so I was slightly apprehensive about the pizza. Generally, I feel that the best pizzas come from restaurants that narrow their choice to really just pizza, with maybe a bowl of pasta and baby cow (veal) thrown in for good measure. Still, I was excited to see what Ciro’s had to offer.
Décor: Picture an old school trattoria, illuminated by a warm fire and countless candle sticks – that’s Ciro’s. Warm and inviting, relaxed and comfortable. Walking into this restaurant felt like I was stepping back into my childhood.
Vibe: We were a big table of 15 so it’s difficult to pick up the vibe of a restaurant over the vibe of the table. That being said, Ciro’s was filled with loud happy people (us, specifically). I couldn’t help but notice – and not in a good way – that there was a live singer outside. Not my cup of tea, or glass of wine as the case may be, but it seemed to draw a few people out into the cold.
Service: The service was brilliant. Jabulani looked after our table and he was really on the ball. When it came time to take the orders he enlisted the services of a fellow waiter to get it done quickly and correctly. We queried the bill at the end of the night (we were wrong, sorry) and he dealt with it like a true professional. Great job. A table of 15 is a big ask and in retrospect, I feel like we didn’t tip him enough. If and when I go back to Ciro’s I’ll keep an eye out for him.
Pricing: Your standard pricing for a normal size pizza.
Base: Of the four places we’ve visited so far, Ciro’s was by far the worst. Across the board, the bases seemed to be too thick and too soggy. At times I like the rustic-ness of a thick base but Ciro’s took it to another level. I ate only 3 slices of my pizza but by the end of it I felt like I’d eaten 4 loaves of bread.
Average score: 2 out of 5
A coupla’ comments: “too thick”, “too thick, not a fan”, “way too thick and a bit soggy” “too much dough”. You get the idea.
Toppings: Ciro’s isn’t out to win any prizes for creative combos, and I like that. I think if pizza isn’t your main game, you shouldn’t try and get too fancy. The old favourites are favourites for a reason. Selection of toppings wasn’t the problem though, it was the quantity and arrangement. Now I’m not a girl who complains about “too much” too often but jeez, the amount of toppings on my pizza could probably have made about 10 others. Way too much! Special mention must be made of the vegetarian pizza – guys, please drain asparagus properly before putting it on a pizza. The cheese literally slid right off the base because it was so waterlogged.
Average score: 2.5
A coupla’ comments: “Meh, my pineapple was chopped too small” , “too much” “too much mushroom, cant taste lamb” “great, little too much spinach” “drain asparagus” “Mexicana? No chili and garlic” “ok, nothing to write home about”.
Awesomeness: Notwithstanding the fact that awesomeness relates to practically anything, we always seem to come back to the sangria. In this case, it tasted great but had very large pieces of dried or tinned fruit in. This was very strange and not particularly appetizing to look at or eat. On a positive note (let’s be honest, there had to be one) everyone seemed to love the atmosphere of Ciro’s.
Average score: 3 out of 5
A coupla’ comments: “great atmosphere”, “sangria was yummy, seeing the crowd is better than the pizza”, “very very very disappointing”, “Jabulani the waiter was the best”, “cool atmosphere, next time coming for porra seafood”
Overall: 7.5 / 15
As one pizzalympian pointed out – we shouldn’t be too critical. Ciro’s is not a predominantly pizza restaurant and they were using their oven for other food over and above our massive order of 15 pizzas. While I completely agree with the sentiment, this is a pizza challenge and it was nominated for its pizza. Unfortunately its performance puts it in last place.
That being said, I will definitely be going back to Ciro’s to check out a few other items on the menu. Check back soon.
Shop 14 Waterford Shopping Centre
Corner Nerine & Witkoppen
Tel: 011 658 1015