Dolce Vita Pizzeria Enoteca
Category: Italian, Pizza, and Pasta
Price Range: 10$-15$ per person.
Area: Montrose/River Oaks
Phone Number: 713-520-8222
On the recommendation of a friend who has lived in the area for a while, we decided to try Dolce Vita Pizzeria Enoteca. It’s a cute little Italian restaurant off of Westheimer.
Dolce Vita definitely gives off a vibe as being an authentic Italian restaurant. The menu has very little description of their food, so be sure to bring your Italian-English dictionary. You don’t own one? That’s ok; the staff was very friendly in helping us figure out what was what. Our waiter was very knowledgeable about everything on the menu, and did a very good job of explaining it.
Dolce Vita is a very good restaurant to impress a date, as it seems like it should be more expensive than it is. Don’t be fooled by the fact that the waiters wear jeans, most of the patrons were dressed in business casual attire (slacks and button ups for the guys, and whatever the female equivalent of that is). I wish there had been bread before the meal, which is a standard for most Italian restaurants.
We had heard the pizza was very good, but we couldn’t visit an Italian restaurant without trying the pasta, so we ordered the Calabrese Pizza and the Rigatoni Alla Carbonara.
The Calabrese Pizza was covered with Mozzarella cheese and Salami. The crust was exceptional: very thin, but without being overcooked and burnt like thin crust pizzas are highly at risk for. The only complaint was that it was quite salty, however that may have been the result of the salami. In other words, definitely go for the pizza, but probably don’t get the Calabrese. There are a lot of vegetarian pizzas as well, if that fits your tastes better.
Pizza Calabrese with Tomato, Mozzarella, and Spicy Salami
The Rigatoni Alla Carbonara was also very good. Rigatoni is tube-shaped noodles, and Alla Carbonara means Alfredo sauce and bacon (and sometimes peas or capers as well, but not at this place). It was also very well cooked, as the noodles were slightly al dente, or undercooked, the way they’re supposed to be. The bacon wasn’t fake Baco bits like some places serve, it was real pieces of bacon broken up on top. It was very delicious.
Rigatoni Alla Carbonara, AKA tube noodles covered in alfredo sauce and bacon from Dolce Vita
The dessert menu was pretty limited. Not much of what you typically expect at an Italian restaurant: Tiramisu, Cannoli, Cheesecake, a thick slice of Chocolate Cake. We ended up settling on a latté chocolate cake with an apple salad on the side. The cake had just a very light coffee flavor, which was not unpleasant even though we are not coffee drinkers. The apple salad tasted like an unsweetened chunky applesauce. The combination of the two was a little odd, as neither was all that sweet when we expected both to be so. Good, but if we went back, we’d probably pass on dessert.
The pizza was a good deal at only 12$ for a 12 inch ‘za. The Pasta may have been a little overpriced, but it was very good, and it’s more than worth it for the environment. All-in-all, it was a great meal at a great place, and we'll surely be back.
Overall, we give Dolce Vita an 8 out of 10.
Positives: Great environment, authentic feel, very friendly service, thin-crust on pizza was perfect
Negatives: Salami on the pizza calabrese was very salty, limited dessert menu