CORRIENTES ARGENTINE PIZZERIA
Address: 137 Bannatyne Ave.
In a city increasingly saturated with quick, casual fare, it takes the unexpected to excite diners. Corrientes Argentine Pizzeria hits the nail on the head, delivering a fresh take on perennial pizza paired with exciting empanadas.
The tone is set by the decor. In the dining room, charming photographs of Buenos Aires locals holding court in bustling Corrientes Avenue cafés hang against exposed brick walls, depicting a cultural hub lined with theatres, bookstores and pizza cafes. This 80-seat bite of South America aims to foster the same vibrant vibe with an all-day menu, selection of beer, wine and espresso and, tucked away at the back, a reading corner that encourages guests to linger and learn.
A toothsome medley of corn, bacon, onion and mozzarella mimics the ingredients of a classic empanada, while the quintessential ham and pineapple is revived with the crunch of fresh hearts of palm. The thin-crust pizzas are substantial and crisp with a bit of chew, but they don’t hold a candle to the hefty mass of the thick-crust tradicionales. For an authentic taste of Argentinean style pizza, try the blanchero. This crusty dough dome is plump with oozy mozzarella filling and crowned with slivers of onion and oregano.
Pickerel shines in a citrus-drenched ceviche, one of six sumptuous offerings on the chef-chosen appetizer plate. It also includes small portions of tender beef carpaccio, tangy sundried tomato and feta wrapped in strips of grilled eggplant and smoky chicken morsels.
A legend printed on the menu’s rear decodes repulgue, the crimping techniques used to seal the 13 varieties of baked empanadas and to indicate their filling. Don’t miss the unique, pleasing marriage of briny feta, smoked salmon and pickerel or the classic, well-executed carne which ping-pongs between sweet raisins and salty olives in a blend of beef and hard-boiled egg. For sweets, it’s hard to beat slicing through a golden empanada crust to release a molten river of saccharine dulce de leche.
Grilled Cuban melts are tasty new menu addition. We love the comforting balance offered by slices of juicy ham and pork shoulder. Melted provolone is enhanced by juicy pops of pickle and spicy mayonnaise.