915 Main St
T: 604 681 9334
Brief Description: This blink-and-you’ll-miss-it pizzeria, located at Main Street and Prior Street, serves up Neapolitan-style pizza, without pomp and circumstance.
An invasion has recently taken place in Vancouver: the invasion of Neapolitan-style pizzas. It has only been in the past year or so that we have seen the emergence of Nicli Antica, Verace, NOVO, Bibo, and now, Pizzeria Farina. Yeah, I can get onboard with this kind of invasion!
I must admit that Pizzeria Farina has quickly become a favourite of mine and the reason for this is in its simple deliverance. It’s not a pizza restaurant, say like Nicli Antica, but more of a no fuss, food-focused pizzeria. I can’t even really say it is a restaurant as there is no table service – you order at the bar from the handwritten menu posted on butcher’s paper, sit down at the communal wood table or the window bar, and wait for your pizza to be called. It’s all very no-frills, which lends itself to a relaxing dining experience.
The interior of Pizzeria Farina is designed by Craig Stanghetta, who has waved his magic design wand over other local hot spots such as Revolver, Meat & Bread, and Bao Bei – all very stylish rooms, in my opinion. Farina is also stylish but in a very simple, rustic way. With its bare bones simplicity of white washed walls, red highlights, and buckled wooden floors, Farina is charming in its own understated way.
The menu consists of seven pizza choices; ranging in price from $9 to $15. The seven choices are: Marinara (tomato, garlic, herbs), Margherita (tomato, mozzarella, basil), Funghi (mushrooms), Quattro Formaggi (four cheeses), Calabrese (soppressatta, mozzarella, black olives), Finocchiona (fennel sausage, provolone, parmesan, spicy peppers) and a changing daily special.
My personal favourite is the Quattro Formaggi and the daily specials. I have hardly made a dent in the regular menu as I always get distracted by the daily special. The Caprese was also good and whilst I found the Funghi was tasty, the water from the mushrooms made the middle of the pizza a bit soggy – so make sure you are going to eat this one immediately (that is the general rule for these Neapolitan-style pizzas anyway).
I have three tips for anyone making the journey to Farina:
1/ For those with small appetites; the pizzas are surprisingly filling. I go here for dinner with my sister on a regular basis and we share one pizza and that is enough. On one visit, we ambitiously ordered two pizzas and we left full to the gills and with a pizza box under one arm.
2/ You can take the pizzas away but they are best served fresh and hot. So sit down, take a load off, and munch your pizza in-house (just don’t mind the slippery chairs!)
3/ If you see a loaf of their freshly baked bread for sale (it retails for about $3 a loaf), don’t question it, just buy it. It is delicious, especially dipped in Farina’s own infused olive oils that are available in store. The bread is crunchy and slightly flame-licked on the outside yet spongy inside. Yum!
Final Thoughts: I am thoroughly impressed by Pizzeria Farina. Before I visited I had written it off as an over-hyped Nicli wannabe – how wrong I was. Pizzeria Farina is serving up affordable, well-crafted pizzas in a relaxed and inviting environment. I absolutely love it there and will continue to return even though it is out of my way.