Due Forni Roma – house made sausage, nueske’s bacon, mozzarella, san marzano tomato, peppers
Meatballs – free range turkey, san marzano tomato, parmigiano
Pizza Bread – neapolitan style
Smoked Pork – garlic bread, calabrian peppers, onion, melted fontina
Short Rib Hash – crispy potato, caramelized onions, egg
Memphis Mafia Bread Pudding – reese’s peanut butter cups, banana, pecans, smoked bacon, gelatology gelato
Once deemed worthy of a trip from the Strip by Rental Car, and since opening and shuttering a second location in Austin, Texas’ loss is Sin City’s gain as Carlos Buscaglia is finally back full-time to focus on Due Forni on Town Center Drive, the product never really suffering in the interim, though likely to benefit with one of the city’s most underregarded Chefs now spending less time in transit and more creating new plates or spending time with his family nearby.
Now celebrating over six years making Summerlin’s best Pizza, the signature two-oven format spinning out crispy Roman or pliable Neapolitan Pies with the sort of char that has more than once made patrons assume them to be wood, it was actually Carlos’ Instagram shots of two new items that enticed a party of three to escape the rain on Saturday, Brunch just past eleven o’clock finding the restaurant quiet with only Chef Buscaglia and one server present for the first half-hour.
A place equally accessible to children as it is traveled gourmands, the well-priced Wine list frequently cited by local Oenophiles as one of the city’s best deals, it was briefly after seating in front of a Television showing Sports that an order was crafted, the restaurant’s eponymous Pizza cooked up crisp with a light char but good foldability quick to arrive with a sauce of pure Tomatoes plus a little seasoning providing the backdrop to smoked Bacon and aromatic house-ground Sausage.
Speaking with Carlos about new ideas, the possibility of Meatballs becoming Bovine-based soon prompting an order, one questions that direction given the deep flavor and springy texture of a current rendition made from Turkey, the unannounced decision to charge $3 for puffy Pizza-bread to soak up the Cheese and Sauce understandable, but something that should probably be included even if it needs to be figured into the hot skillet’s menu cost.
Taking a look at one of the Brunch plates, a smoky Short Rib Hash finding shredded Beef ever-so-slightly crisped next to diced Spuds and Caramelized Onions beneath two over-easy Eggs, those looking for something new are encouraged to consult the Happy Hour menu, the description of “Smoked Pork – Garlic Bread, Calabrian Peppers, Onion, Melted Fontina” doing no justice to a skillet of Garlic Knots as soft as Parker House Rolls topped in glazed Pork Belly and a dollop of Cheese blended with bright heat plus onions cooked sweet and soft.
Tempted by more food, but knowing better than to overdo it with plans for dessert, Due Forni’s monthly Bread Pudding achieves a new level of success by way of the “Memphis Mafia” clearly created with The King as an inspiration, the lightly browned top slowly melting a ball of Gelatology Vanilla Gelato into custard-infused Bread intermingling with Pecans, Peanut Butter Cups, Bananas and Bacon.
FOUR AND A HALF STARS: Limited only by its kitchen and nearby clientele, the former featuring only the ovens plus a simple stove while the latter is notoriously renowned to line up at Bonefish Grill or PF Changs, Due Forni continues to shine with the sort of creativity rarely seen even in the Strip’s upscale Italian eateries with the bill tallying nearly half the cost.
RECOMMENDED: Smoked Pork, Due Forni, Memphis Mafia.
AVOID: Touching the skillets. We were warned four times.
TIP: Brunch will be ending soon, per Chef Buscaglia, with an 11:00am to 6:00pm Happy Hour Menu leading up to dinner. Full menu and specials soon to be announced.
WHAT THE STARS MEAN: 5 World Class, 4 Excellent, 3 Good, 2 Fair, 1 Poor.