Pangea Kitchen feels like a cross between a vintage cafeteria and a modern bistro. An efficient counter ordering system makes it a down-to-business lunch spot but the food that arrives at the table is full of creative flair.
It sounds like an odd combination, but pizza and Thai food are the two main draws. I think they’re both good. The menu also offers salads and a separate dessert bar features pastries and gelato.
Two styles of pizzas are available. Detroit-style has a thick, buttery crust with crunchy-edged end pieces worth fighting over. The Baller is the best of them: marinara topped with thinly sliced, house-made meatballs, roasted onions, and house-made mozzarella. A drizzle of spicy honey makes it clear that you are eating something truly special.
If wood-fired, thin crust pies are more your style, order from a long list of Neapolitan pizzas. Even the simple Margherita is just right. It’s covered with a rich San Marzano sauce and topped with that same, creamy house-made mozzarella.
If you’re a devotee of regional food, you might be tempted to skip the Thai fare in favor of pizza — the Midwestern Detroit pizza in particular. But I think it’s worth stretching one’s taste. Made in-house noodles for the Thai dishes have a delicate texture and just the right bite. Pad Ke Mao — Thai Drunken Noodles — are a delicious blend of bok choy and peppercorns with a balanced punch of fresh ginger. They can be ordered with or without meat.
In addition to pizza, noodles, and gelato, Pangea Kitchen also has a bar serving handcrafted cocktails, beer, and wine. The bar does not start service until 4:00 pm, but the bar area is open for additional seating during busy lunch hours. Those thirsty for an adult beverage earlier in the day can select from a variety of canned and bottled beers at the checkout counter.