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Jonathan Gold Raises Rossoblu and Sotto Comparisons in Cosa Buona Review

The restaurant by Zach Pollack gets the J. Gold treatment less than two months in

Pizza and salad at Cosa Buona in Echo Park
Pizza at Cosa Buona
Wonho Frank Lee

Jonathan Gold is continuing his recent streak of reviewing just-opened restaurants (Rossoblu got the treatment just six weeks in), this time selecting the less-than-two-month-old Cosa Buona. The restaurant by Alimento chef Zach Pollack, formerly of Sotto with Rossoblu chef Steve Samson, is “the kind of place the anti-gentrification guys like to gripe about — natural wine, fritto misto, and farmers market broccolini,” but is a neighborhood restaurant nonetheless. That means there’s Buffalo wings, “ultracrisp” mozzarella sticks, and pizza that leans more Italian-American than pure Neopolitan:

Unlike, say, Sotto or Pizzana, Cosa Buona seems to have its roots in Italian American pie, with the crisp softness, globs of cheese and foldability that the style implies. It even smells like good Italian American pizza, with high notes of dried oregano, slightly scorched garlic, and a slight sugary sweetness that might be more at home in New Jersey than they would be in Pozzuoli. At a Neapolitan specialist in Los Angeles, a purist would insist on the traditional Margherita pizza with tomato, mozzarella and basil. Here, she may actually be better off with the Hawaiiana, where the thinly sliced pineapple, Canadian bacon and hot chiles combine for an almost subtle effect that may remind you of the Yucatán. [LAT]

The Times critic also raises some interesting questions about the opening of Pollack’s new restaurant:

Did Pollack intentionally open his restaurant on the same day that his former partner at Sotto, Steve Samson, opened Rossoblu downtown? Is his soft, leopard-spotted pizza crust meant as a nod to the spotted crust at Sotto or a thumbed nose at its density? Are the direct honesty of Cosa Buona’s toppings — pepperoni, sausage and greens, even pineapple and Canadian bacon — meant as a reproach to Sotto’s delicious toppings of pig cheek with fennel pollen or salame with buckwheat honey, or is Pollack just asserting his restaurant’s identity as a neighborhood pizzeria; a place where there is no shame in ordering a “meatlover’s” pie. [LAT]

Overall, it’s an enthusiastic review, with the Goldster concluding, “Cosa Buona is not just a chefly take on the idea of a neighborhood pizzeria, it is a neighborhood pizzeria.”

Cosa Buona

2100 Sunset Boulevard, , CA 90026 (213) 908-5211 Visit Website

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