This tiny trailer resting in one corner of a near-vacant parking lot in a less-than-hip neighborhood may not look like much on the outside, but like so many things in this life we wander through, it is what is beneath the shell that truly matters.
In this case, it's good Neo-Neapolitan pies prepared by a mustachioed man known only as "Squish."
I'd heard a little about this place on pdxplate.com, and the pictures were dynamite, so I knew I had to try it as soon as possible. Well, tonight, I did, bringing along two eager friends willing to tolerate my pizza fanaticism.
We ordered two pies: the Margherita (with pepperoni on one half -- $12), and the 3 Sisters ($13), then sat down at the one picnic table outside the joint (there are a few more green plastic chairs nearby for additional guests).
The Margherita came out first, hot and bubbling and picture-perfect. The char on the cornicione of this pizza, courtesy of Squish's 800-degree gas oven, is ideal, with wonderful black bubbles on the outer rim of the crust and impeccable spotting on the upskirt. This crust was thin, but it had a nice crispness to it, not quite as stiff as a NY-style slice, but not far off. The cornicione was crispy on the outside with a nicely chewy center, and good hole structure within. Sauce was dark and slightly thick, tangy. It had a cloyingly pleasant garlic taste to it, further enhanced by the minced garlic popping up randomly in the red tomato sea. Small rounds of fresh melted mozzarella lay in perfect balance on the pie, so creamy that my teeth sunk through it every time, even when the pizza had cooled, to my delight. Fresh basil was scattered judiciously on the pie after it had been removed from the oven, completing the classic Margherita.
As mentioned, I ordered pepperoni on half the pie. Wy'east's pepperoni comes from Otto's Sausage Kitchen in
The 3 Sisters came only a few minutes after the Margherita / Pepperoni combo (the oven cooks only one pie at a time). This one was topped with tomato sauce, plenty of mozz, olives, red onions, and mushrooms. I'm not a huge fan of this kind of pie, but I found Wy'east's version to be more than palatable, the bitterness of the toppings melding well with the tanginess of the sauce.
My one major complaint about Wy'east's pies is that the crust is utterly devoid of flavor. It has no discernable salt content, and neither could I detect any sourdough culture in the dough. It really is just a gorgeous, well-prepared vehicle for the toppings that is completely bland. It's my sincerest hope that Squish alters the recipe to include a sourdough poolish, or the addition of sea salt at the very least, to bring his pizza to the next level.
It is astounding the level of the pizza coming out of this little trailer. It puts many local pizzerias to shame, even with its needed improvements. This is definitely a food cart to watch in the Foster/Powell district, and one I'll be frequenting again in the future.