Jeff Varasano, who opened Varasano’s Pizza in Atlanta in March 2009, is a former software engineer and New York native who began making pizza at home because he couldn’t find any he liked after he moved to Atlanta in 1998. “I was 100 percent focused on the crust,” he says.” After six years of tinkering, he finally had a breakthrough — the light, thin crust he’d been trying to achieve.
In 2006, Varasano’s website about pizza making went viral. People began flying to Atlanta from all over the country for pizza tastings in his home kitchen. So, Varasano, eventuallly decided to open his own restaurant, and has had to adjust from his home oven to using a commercial oven. Nana’s, the house special, is the pizza his grandmother used to make, topped with mozzarella and tomato sauce with a secret blend of Italian herbs.
So, being the only blogger that hadn’t written up about Varasano’s Pizza yet, I met up with Amy and we tried it out. I was expecting a larger menu, so I was a little disappointed to find only 4 starters (3 salads and 1 platter of cured meats) and 9 pizzas. You can build your own, but as with most pizza joints, it is always more expensive to build your own vs. ordering from the ones they already have on the menu. I was also surprised to see the lack of meat toppings on pizzas.
Amy and I chose the Salumi pizza (the one with cured Italian meats) and the New Haven Clam with clams, mussels and garlic. Although you can specify whether you want this with white or red sauce, we chose white sauce as the other pizza came with red sauce.
Pizzas definitely come out quickly here. True to what Mr. Varasano states, you only need to cook these thin crust pizzas at a high temperature for a couple minutes. I liked the Salumi, but I would have liked it even better had I chosen to forgo the olives. I don’t like the olives of any kind, but thought they might pair well with the meats. Amy and I still finished that by ourselves. The New Haven Clam at Varasano’s Pizza was a different story. It didn’t taste like a pizza, but more like a flatbread and the garlic was very overpowering, to the point that I couldn’t taste much else.
We did have a slice of cake for dessert at Varasano’s Pizza. This cake was delish, moist and yummy, delivered to us by Mr. V himself.
Ingredients were definitely fresh and I’d like to go back and try a simple pie at Varasano’s Pizza with pepperoni on it and see how it compares to others I’ve had in the past, but other than that I’ll stick with Fellini’s. I know I’m alone in this opinion given how busy it was on that Wednesday night when I visited, so I’m sure Varasano’s Pizza will continue to flourish.
One pizza at Varasano’s is 6 slices and 2 can definitely share one. Pricing is reasonable with pizzas between $11 and $15.
2171 Peachtree Rd. NE
Atlanta, GA 30309