The Roosevelt ~ Carlsbad

The Roosevelt is an Italian style gourmet Pizzeria located on, funnily enough, Roosevelt street in Carlsbad. It is owned by Hector Reyna who helms the kitchen along with his son Stephen, you may know Stephen as former head Chef of the Privateer.

The Roosevelt is a little off the beaten path. The best way to find it is to find Pizza Port in Carlsbad and then walk on by it to The Roosevelt.

find (1 of 1)

Almost there just keep going. Walk on by, nope, walk on by. You’ll be glad you did.

ext (1 of 1)

There, you found it. 3067 Roosevelt St. Carlsbad.

int (1 of 1)

Simple, modern interior. Seats about 60? Plus a patio.

The Roosevelt serves Classic Italian with a twist. A farm to table mentality with almost everything made in-house.

The menu features salads, veggie dishes, piatti like meatballs, lasagna, stuffed shells, and of course pizza.

I started with the caprese…

caprese (1 of 1)

Caprese ~ Mozzalrella, basil, local tomato, olive oil, balsamic.

I love caprese. It is a simple flavor combination that is just perfect. Because it is so simple the ingredients have to be top-notch. These were. You can tell a cheap mozzarella a mile away. it should be like this, soft and creamy. Also tomatoes at room temperature, as they should be. A+

pizza (1 of 1)

Carlsbad Pie ~ Tomato, hen of the woods mushrooms, garlic, black olive, mozzarella, and an add-on of their house made sausage.

A pizza requires a great crust, a great sauce, and great cheese, otherwise it falls apart. It is like culinary Jenga.

The crust was perfect, crispy yet still light and fluffy. The sauce is so light with a slight acidity that works off the sweetness of the dough. I love Hen Of The Woods (Maitake) mushrooms. The in-house sausage was great, yay no nitrates.

OK, cheese. If you are used to shredded cheese being spread all over your pizza, this is not that. This is slices of mozzarella that melt. Think of it as a topping and not a base.

Prices are reasonable for the quality you are getting. I would say almost a steal. My pizza was $13 plus $3 for the additional sausage. A Papa Johns large sausage pizza is $18 and should never be eaten. *if you are extremely drunk you get a pass on that decision.

We have a lot of great pizza in North County take advantage.

The Roosevelt

3067 Roosevelt St. Carlsbad

#food #foodporn #pizza #italianfood #carlsbad

Crust Pizzeria ~ Carlsbad

Crust Pizzeria is a Chef driven, gourmet pizza restaurant located on the border of Carlsbad and Encinitas at 3263 Camino De Los Coches, Carlsbad. (sprouts shopping center.)

The restaurant is pretty large with a medium-sized bar area, an open kitchen area, and seating for about 75 inside and an additional 40 on the patio. Still it gets busy on nights and weekends.

crust ext (1 of 1)

Crust Pizzeria

crust int (1 of 1)

Crust Pizzeria interior.

crust chef (1 of 1)

Master Pizza Chef Charlie Meola working at his craft.

Chef Meola has been working at his craft for 18 years. This experience and his passion for only using the best ingredients shows in his food. I was luck enough to grab some of his time and you can read that interview Here.

crust slice (1 of 1)

Cheese Pizza by the slice available at lunch.

crust peperoni (1 of 1)

Pepperoni Pizza ~ Grande mozzarella, Boars Head pepperoni, and fresh-cut basil.

crust specialty (1 of 1)

Tasia ~ Belle chevre goat cheese, kalamata olives, grilled eggplant, zucchini, Grande Mozzarella, feta cheese, oregano, lemon zest, and chili flake.

The pizza I had on a previous visit was the Sophia ~ Spicy sausage, crispy chard, olive oil, fontina cheese, ricotta, and rosemary.

I do not have a pic because my phone ate it:(  but it was delicious. Perfect crust, loved the quality of the cheese and the balance of flavor.

I would put crust in the top 4 pizza places in San Diego at the moment. First off don’t give me the Filippi’s they are mediocre. Pizza Port is OK if your close and want to grab lunch. Urbn does not know how to cook or time their crust, both times it was charred and inedable around the outside ( and I was there when it was slow so it’s not like they got distracted.)

No, I would say Biga, Crust, and The Privateer followed fourth by Pizza Maniac (for an old school grab a slice after work or school place.)

I know I talked mainly about pizza but Crust also does pastas, salads, and sandwiches.

I plan on going back for non work eating soon to explore the menu a little more along with going back to Biga for lunch because it was too dark for pics at dinner.

Crust Pizzeria

3263 Camino De Los Coches, Carlsbad

#food #foodporn #Pizza

PizzaManiac ~ Vista

So, my friend Dinah recommended this place and since she has pretty good taste, I figured I would check it out. I am glad I did.

PizzaManiac is in a strip mall in Vista sandwiched between Taco Bar and a laundromat.


PizzaManiac ~ 1461 North Santa Fe, Vista (corner of Santa Fe and Bobier)

The interior is simple and clean and houses a big ass pizza oven.


The previously mentioned big ass pizza oven.

They have about 9 specialty pies or you can build your own. They also have a 2 slice and drink special for $7.00 which is a great deal especially for the quality of the pizza.


My slice ~ Pesto, garlic, mozzarella, and feta.

Great toppings, real mozzarella, not greasy plastic cheese, and a delightfully light and crispy crust. The crust sold it for me.


Buffalo Wings

Due to them not having a deep fryer, these are baked. Great wings, crispy on the outside and moist and tender chicken. It looks like they would need sauce (which they provide.) but I used very little. Because they are coated before baking the buffalo sauce seeps in, departing a lot of flavor.

They will start serving beer in the future.



Ben Phillips ~ Proud owner and Vista native.

Ben is a great guy and a local business owner who is doing things right. Fresh ingredients, treated with care. the kind of business and individual this site is focused on supporting.

Trivia ~ he originally wanted to call his place “Passion Of The Crust”, which I love, he may still do T-shirts. If he does I will buy one:)

Next time you want pizza or wings give PizzaManiac a try, you will be glad you did.


1461 North Santa Fe, Vista


Knockout Pizza ~ Oceanside

Going to do a quick quick post today as the heat in combination with my heart condition, do not make for traipsing around North County.

I was by the Regal Cinema Downtown and stopped by Knockout Pizza for a few slices.

Knockout Pizza started in 1999 in Carlsbad and this is their 2nd location located where Santos mexican food used to be at 401 Mission Ave. Oceanside. It also looks like they are planning a 3rd in Downtown San Diego soon.


Not my pic, my outside shot did not come out.

Knock out pizza logo

Nice casual interior and local artist mural, something I always love.

Knock out pizza pizza

My two slices ~ Basil, tomato, garlic and Sausage, pepperoni, meatball.

Both were good. Nice crisp thin crust.

Definitely the best Pizza I have had downtown.

By no way would I compare them to Privateer or Blue Ribbon but a solid slice of NY style pizza none the less.

Knockout Pizza

401 mission Ave. Oceanside

Privateer Coal Fired Pizza (Re-Visited) ~ Oceanside

So, I have written about Privateer Coal Fired Pizza before and also have said it is kind of hard to go back to places while trying to find new ones for the website. The loop-hole is having dinner with friends who have not been there…it justifies it for me, which I have to get over because great food is great food.

privateer oven

Coal and heat, where the magic happens

I always say when speaking about Privateer that their pizza is good but have a vegetable dish. Chef Stephen Reyna is “The Vegetable whisperer” and proved it again last night. The pizzas were on point too, this was a very good meal.

privateer coli

Spicy Cauliflower ~ This is such a great dish it almost tastes like a Thai dish

privateer sicilian

Sicilian Pizza ~ Olives, anchovies, and added mozzarella

an extremely well-balanced flavor bomb. Real anchovies are the shit, forget memories of the canned crap if you can get real ones they are things of beauty.

privateer mario

Mario photo bombing his Margarita Pizza

privateer dang

People I love ~ “Ton Ton” just so you know how to say it and Mario owners of Banana Dang!

privateer gang

Charlie Owner of Privateer, T2, and Mario

Privateer just go…and order a vegetable dish:)

Privateer Coal Fired Pizza

1706 S. Coast Hwy.
Oceanside, CA 92054

Quei Bravi Ragazzi Sport & Gourmet ~ Encinitas


Quei Bravi Ragazzi Sport & Gourmet is an authentic Italian style eatery focused around Pizza, Panini, salads, and the love of high-end custom Italian road bikes (yep, that is what I said). Quei Bravi Ragazzi translates to “Good fellas”.

The restaurant features a bar style seating area, a small dinning area, and a patio….and lots of bikes.



This Masciarelli “Stealth” will set you back about $11,500

The menu is much more reasonable averaging $8 – $16. The ingredients are authentic Italian and of high quality. Everything I tried was extremely fresh and flavorful.


Sfiziosa Salad ~  Iceburg lettuce, strawberries, tomatoes  carrots, gorgonzola cheese, and aged balsamic.


Crudo Panini ~ Parma ham, Cresenza cheese (Mild, soft, Italian cows milk cheese), Arugula, spinach salad, chips

I will have to go back with friends for some pizza.

Quei Bravi Ragazzi Sport & Gourmet
90 N Coast Highway 101
Encinitas, California 92024


Gourmet Pizza in North County

I wanted to highlight great Pizza options in North County. The following two locations constantly use high quality ingredients and produce great crusts. They use Wood Fired and Coal Fired ovens respectively.

First up is Blue Ribbon Artisan Pizza in Encinitas.SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

Blue Ribbon is helmed by Chef Wade Hageman, who before opening Blue Ribbon in 2010 was the Executive Chef at the much loved and missed Blanca in Solana Beach.SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES


Blue Ribbons Harvest Moon Pizza – EVO, Butternut and Red Kuri Squash, Mozzarella, Goat Cheese, Fig Balsamic, and Arugula. A sweeter taste profile is countered with the slightbitterness of the Arugula.

Second up is The Privateer Coal Fired Pizza in Oceanside.l

The Privateer is just over a year old under Chef Hector Reyna.


Raen Pie – Prosciutto, Provolone, Arugula, Fiordilatte Mozzarella. I liked that the Arugula was dressed with EVO.

Lunch at The Privateer Coal Fire Pizza, Oceanside

privateer logo 2 Privateer CapresePrivateer Rolled Tacos

While the Privateer specializes in coal fired gourmet pizza they also offer a range of appetizers and daily specials. This is what I went for as I wanted to sample a few items on the menu. I had the Caprese Salad and the Mahi Mahi rolled tacos (pictured above). I try not to “review” restaurants I feature, mainly if it is here it is an example of a place that meets the requirements that are “Local, Chef and ingredient driven with quality food”. Saying that, I do mention things if I must and these rolled tacos were ones I needed to point out. I can honestly say these were the best rolled tacos I have ever had, this by someone who grew up in So. Cal. by the way.They were crisp, not greasy and the filling of Mahi Mahi was cooked perfectly. It was juicy, flavorful and there was enough of it that it was not overpowered by the tortilla or toppings. They came with a version of tartar sauce that was more like a thin Crème fraîche than a standard tartar sauce, which again worked without over powering the fish. Did I mention I really liked them:)

The Privateer Coal Fire Pizza 1706 S. PCH Oceanside, Ca 92054