Last week we were kindly invited to review Pizza Express in the Metro Centre after it re-opened its doors after a makeover inspired by Metroland. The restaurant sits on the former site of the iconic indoor fun fair, and the artwork on the walls brings back nostalgic memories of Saturdays spent with friends going on the famous rollercoaster (not to mention the memories of my 8th birthday party
As the name would suggest, pizza is at the heart of Pizza Express. Founder Peter was passionate about all things Italian, and after returning to the UK after travelling, he was shocked that great-tasting pizza was nowhere to be found – and that’s where the idea was born.
The menu is jam-packed full of delicious food, from classic pizzas to healthier leggera options, or al forno pastas for those that don’t fancy the doughy stuff.
We were greeted by the friendly staff who showed us to our table and took our drinks order- as it was a school night, we opted for soft drinks, although the new Spring cocktails sounded amazing.
For starters, I opted for the dough balls, a Pizza Express classic. Crispy on the outside and soft in the middle, they come with garlic butter and are the perfect starter to get the taste buds going. The other half is a huge fan of Italian meats, so obviously went for the classic Italian antipasto. Although at the higher end of the price scale, it comes jam packed with finnochiona, Milano salami, roasted tomatoes and buffalo mozzarella to name but a few. Also included is delicious dough baked with Gran Milano cheese accompanied by garlic butter and pestorissa, a sweet and spicy tomato dip – it was delicious.
After polishing off our starters in record time, we were promptly served our main courses. Although I was tempted by the healthier leggier option, the classic Padana pizza sounded too good to miss out on. Goat’s cheese, mozzarella, tomato, caramelised onion and spinach- it’s a match made in heaven. The base was thin and crispy, with just enough topping not to overwhelm the base. The other half went for the Spring special Zapparoli pizza- with a bright yellow, corn base, chicken, spicy sausage and red roquito pearls, it is hard not to be intrigued when you see it. It tasted amazing, the corn base adds more depth than the traditional tomato base, and I’d love to see how it would work with other topping combinations.
Although the dessert menu looked amazing (lemon bundt cake I’m talking about you here), we were both too full to go the full way with three courses. Overall, the staff were great, the food was gorgeous and the price was great value for money.
Overall, we had a lovely meal here. Although it is open plan in the food course area, Pizza Express is set back from the main food strip of the MetroCentre, so it isn’t too loud. The food was great, the open kitchens at the back give the restaurant an authentic Italian feel, and the service was top notch. Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed our meal here and would definitely recommend giving it a try next time you’re in the MetroCentre.