Houston isn’t just barbecue and Tex-Mex! Cane Rosso delivers some authentic – and amazing – Neapolitan pizza.
I love pizza. It’s my no hesitation desert island food, and I will eat it at any meal (and in-between as well). I think one of the best things about pizza is that even mediocre examples still taste pretty good. It’s just hard to mess up something that combines bread and cheese, although if you try to put anchovies, mushrooms, or pineapple on my pizza, we are going to have words. With that being said, since there is so much good pizza out there, it takes something special to move it up a tier to GREAT pizza, and Cane Rosso delivers.
Cane Rosso is fairly new to Houston, but we first tried out their wares at their Ft. Worth location. I am happy to report that the Houston location is just as good, and no 4 hour drive required! They’re off of Shepherd in an area of the Heights that lately seems to be bursting at the seams with quality dining experiences. However, they are also in that part of the Heights that is technically a dry jurisdiction, so you cannot just walk in and order a drink. You have to join their “social club,” after which they can provide you with an adult beverage, and you can reward them for their largess with the transfer of currency. Because otherwise, being dry, they “can’t” sell you booze. One of the odder parts of the Houston dining scene. But once you get past that, they have a good (if not huge) beer selection, and some pretty nice cocktails if you are in to something a little fancier.
Looking at the menu, they offer a variety of dishes: appetizers, sandwiches, pasta, and some lovely sounding daily specials, but I doubt I will ever get to try them, because I can’t get past the pizza. So good. It is a Neapolitan pizza, meaning that it’s thin, somewhat floppy crust that is perfectly acceptable to eat with a knife and fork (unless you’re an expert pizza eater like me). And I know that “floppy” hardly sounds like an endorsement, but the taste and chewiness of the crust are just fantastic. With each mouthful, you get this rich, deep flavor, and the chew makes it seem super hearty. And yet, with the crust being on the thin side, you don’t feel like you’ve eaten a pound of lead after a couple of slices. I could easily eat an entire pizza there. Maybe two. But for people who have any sort of self-control, one pizza is probably enough for two light eaters, and 3 people could happily share two pies.
The problem is which ones to order. They all look so good. And there are a few off-menu options that are awesome. By my count, they are 6 for 6 with me, and have no sign of delivering a dud. Most recently, we had one that came with brisket from a neighborhood smoker, combined with goat cheese, and a jalapeno pesto. Wow. Somehow all those assertive flavors fell into line to make a sublime pizza. And you better believe we will shamelessly be trying to recreate that pesto.
Another offering, Liz’s favorite BTW, is the Honey Bastard. Not only is it fun to order, but it’s delicious. It is topped with homemade mozzarella, prosciutto crudo, bacon marmalade, and jalapeno infused honey. It’s got just enough sweet to provide a nice counter balance to the savory prosciutto and bacon. The only downside is that I have to actively distract Liz in order to get a slice away from her for myself.
Cane Rosso is still pretty new, and enjoying a much deserved buzz, and as such can be a little crowded when you go at peak times (Friday and Saturday evenings), but they do a good job of cycling people through, and you always have the option of ordering for carry out. Once their second location opens up, I’d expect to see the crowd thin a little, but with food this good, I think it’s always going to have a lot of customers.
Have you tried Cane Rosso? What’s your favorite pizza? Let us know in in the comments!