Lido Pizza (里朵), which opened last month near the Shida night market, sells hand-tossed pizza baked in a large, brick oven that takes pride of place in the restaurant’s open kitchen. The newly refurbished space’s ambience is more upscale than other pizza restaurants nearby, but is nonetheless still laid-back enough for this college neighborhood. The interior’s sleek black chairs and tables are tempered by warm earth tones, brick walls and soft lighting. The wait staff is attentive and food is delivered briskly, even during a recent lunch hour when the restaurant was filled with customers.
We ordered a prosciutto e fungi pizza (NT$260) and an asparagus and white egg pizza lunch set (NT$180). For an extra NT$90, all pizzas can be served as a set meal, which come with soup, salad and choice of coffee or iced tea. In my opinion, the soup by itself is enough to justify the added expenditure. This week it was a delicious pumpkin soup that was more savory than expected, served hot and topped with just a few drops of sweet cream. The salad is a small, neat mound of butter lettuce and cherry tomatoes garnished with a few sprigs of watercress, brought to life by a very tangy vinaigrette.
My pizza had slices of hard-boiled eggs and stalks of asparagus artfully arranged on a layer of mozzarella cheese. A light but potent dusting of Parmesan cheese and salt saved the pie from blandness. The crust was slightly more buttery and chewy than that of my companion’s order, the prosciutto e fungi, which was topped with thin slices of cured ham, an ample helping of mushrooms, mozzarella and tomato sauce. The crust on this pizza was thin and satisfyingly crispy.
Address: 30, Ln 16, Taishun St, Taipei City (台北市泰順街16巷30號)
Telephone: (02) 2363-4640 Average meal: NT$300
Open: Daily from 11:30am to 3pm and 5pm to 9pm
Details: Chinese and English menu; credit cards not accepted
Other dishes on the menu include the margherita, which is topped with tomato sauce, mozzarella and oregano (NT$160) and the Hawaii (NT$240) laden with ham, pineapple and cream cheese.
Vegetarian offerings include the felicitously named vegetariana (sweet pepper, eggplant and zucchini, NT$220), porcini (a mix of mushrooms, NT$360) and formaggi (blue, ricotta, Parmesan and mozzarella cheese, NT$380). Sweet tooths can be indulged with the la frutta pizza (NT$200), which is topped with a variety of in-season fruits.
One other notable dish on the menu is the Caprese pizza (NT$280), which is similar to the margherita but garnished with basil instead of oregano and large soft slices of buffalo mozzarella instead of the standard cheese. The buffalo mozzarella is made from water buffalo milk, which is higher in fat and as a result much creamier tasting than run-of-the-mill cow milk. Stone-oven baked pizza connoisseurs who like their crusts thin and crispy may however be disappointed, as the Caprese’s crust was of a similar texture to that of the asparagus and white egg pizza.
Lido also offers several pasta dishes and will be expanding its menu of lunch specials starting today.