Why? First, their outdoor patio is huge, quiet, and comfortable fronting Courthouse Plaza and set back from Clarendon Boulevard. The outdoor space will soon have a fire pit and table once they get it re-tiled or so they tell me. Second, the service is excellent, with knowledgeable friendly servers who really knew their stuff from the beer to the food to the restaurant's story. Third, the pizza, is really good--dare I say bordering on excellent.
I ventured out this past week with a friend to try the food. We started by sharing the smokey blue cheese risotto balls. If there was a weak point of the meal, this was it. While the balls were tasty, with a smokey, creamy center of blue cheese, they could have benefited from an additional crunch--perhaps a few more minutes in the fryer, and a bit more bacon, which was too sparse. The garlic cream sauce underneath was lacking flavor, resulting in a soggy, unappealing underside.
But, oh my, the pizza! I understand from talking to the floor manager that Fireworks aims to be the best wood fired pizza place in the area, and if my experience is any indication they are well on their way. I opted for the RT, named for a brewer at Allagash. This pizza's pesto base was covered with roasted peppers, goat cheese, spinach, and salami. The crust had a nice crunch and chewiness; the ample toppings, which I thought might overwhelm or cancel each other out, worked well. Not a traditional choice, but I loved it.
My friend and I had wanted to try the mixed berry cobbler, but they were out. We went instead with the hot cookie sundae. This was a Cheesecake Factory-style larger than life dessert, but it delivered on the promise of a gooey, hot cookie and was suitable for sharing. Perhaps the best part was the pairing of the Brooklyn Brown Ale that my server suggested.
And at least on my visit, I was not the only one impressed with Fireworks. I overheard the couple at the table next to me also complimenting the server on their margarita pizza.
This is a casual dinner spot with prices to match--around $11 for a small pizza and $17 for a large. For more details on the happy hour food and beer steals, check out my original Fireworks post.