Review by: Bruce Bilmes and Susan Boyle

Take a former USC quarterback who has completed his two years of missionary work for the LDS church, and place him in a pizzeria in a wealthy suburb of Las Vegas. This does not sound like a promising formula for pizza greatness. Yet that is exactly what owner Brad Otton has achieved at Settebello.

First a warning: this is Naples-style pizza (they are one of a handful of pizzerias in the US to receive VPN certification). It is not much like American pizza. Any US pizza lovers who’ve traveled around Italy know what we’re talking about. Think of it this way: our favorite pizza on the planet is the white clam pie at Pepe’s in New Haven. That American pie is Springsteen’s Rosalita, a wild, ecstatic thrill ride of a pizza. Settebello’s pizza (and most Italian pies in our experience) is Vivaldi’s “La Primavera”: all parts working seamlessly together in understated harmony. One style is not intrinsically better than the other. Let your mood dictate your pie.

Settebello’s pizzas are sized for one person, served uncut unless you ask for them otherwise. The mozzarella is fresh; the flour, San Marzano tomatoes, Parmesan, and prosciutto come from Italy; the other cured meats are hand-crafted by Mario Batali’s dad’s artisan salumi shop in Seattle (Mr. Otton’s original hometown). The pizzas are cooked directly on the brick floor of the bell-shaped oven, next to a pile of burning wood. The cooking time might better be measured in seconds than minutes.

You can choose one of the pizza set-pieces on the menu, or you can select toppings from a list that includes “wood oven sausage,” finnochiona, pancetta, Italian anchovies, roasted onion, arugola, and pignoli. No pepperoni. The toppings are top-quality, but you would be hard-pressed to improvise a combo better than the classic Margherita (crushed tomatoes, mozzarella, basil, Parmigiano-Reggiano, extra-virgin olive oil). At the current price of $9 for a personal Margherita pie, this is a real bargain for pizza of this pedigree and quality (stylistically similar, and admittedly even better, pies were once found at the now-defunct Una Pizza Napoletana in New York, but you’d have shelled out over $20 a pop for those).

Dessert is not what you’re here for, but if you want something sweet to cap off your evening, know that they’ll make you an affogato, that ineffably satisfying Italian concoction that is nothing more than espresso poured over a scoop of gelato.

What To Eat

Pizza Margherita

Pizza Bianca





Settebello Recipes


What do you think of Settebello?

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