Monday, July 21, 2008

Bravi Tuscan Kitchen: Has this gem lost its luster???

Bravi Tuscan Kitchen
5940 West Union Hills Drive
Glendale, AZ 85308
(602) 588-3000

This used to be one of the best Tuscan style Pizza places in Phoenix. I would drive up from Goodyear to 59th Ave & Union Hills whenever I had an excuse to.
The bruschetta was spectacular and the Pizza was like none other I had before.
Then I guess the owner decided to expand.....

We got really excited that he opened on up on Northern Ave & 101 much closer to us.
We got in the 1st week they were open and the pizza was burnt, and the cookies were stale. The bruschetta was ok, but wasnt quite like we expected.

Yesterday I said, I would avoid the Northern location and head out to the original one on 59th ave. WOW! The pizza has fallen to the quality of mall pizza but still above frozen grocery pizza. The cheese appears to have been changed from 3 cheese to what seems to be cheap mozzarella. They over cheesed it so you couldnt really taste the tomato sauce. The pizza was so big it wouldnt fit on the plate so it sort of hung off the plate and grease was dripping on to the table.
The dough was so thin, that many times, if you try to break off a slice of pizza, it would tear from the weight of the cheese and the excessive grease. Even the bruschetta bread wasnt toasted properly so at the end of the meal, it was mushy bread with the tomatoes. it used to be able to withstand a full lunch and still be crunchy and yet soft.

I guess that is what happens when you expand too quickly and forget your original customer base. I wish the owner all the best. Is it possible that both these incidents are isolated..... perhaps. But perception is reality and right now this beautiful pizzeria has been demoted to mall food.

Anyone have similiar or different experiences recently????


carlaaz said...

I go to the 59th Ave & Union Hills Bravi since they have opened and have noticed a decline. It's still pretty good, although sometimes am not happy.

They have Mexican cooks, that speak Spanish, so sometimes they interpret incorrectly. Like when I don't want cheese on anything- I have to totally check everything over and make sure.

Also the staff are little kids, basically very early 20's if that, so the experience level isn't very good sometimes.

I made the mistake of ordering a Merlot house wine and they sold me the most expensive Merlot they had. I was pissed as it wasn't even good. I don't think it was even a Merlot. It was very bitter. I like fruity. That's what happens when children (young staff woman) are picking the wine. House wine means a cheap red wine, in this case a Merlot. It was $13 a glass. The regular house wine is less than $8, and even that's considered somewhat expensive.

It's not as good as it used to be, but it still has its good days.

It just comes down to watching what the staff do and watching your order. You have to do that everywhere you go.


CrediblyEdible said...

You know I agree... I still pop in every once in a while... whats disappointing is that he started off so well when he had 1 store. He is focusing more on his east valley stores than his 2 west valley locations.

You need to always be careful when you are ordering everywhere you go.

He may have his good days but I am finding more off than good.

PS: $8 for a glass of wine is way overpriced... $13 is not even funny in a fast casual pizza place.

In Ruths Chris steak house... ok $8 for house, or even $12 for basic is acceptable, but not at a pizza place.

carlaaz said...

I know. We eat out a lot, maybe more than you do. I have actually considered doing the same type of site from time to time but don't have the time normally.

We used to eat out every night and sometimes for lunch as well, but I have cut that down a bit lately as I just plain got tired of poor service.

I once got into a argument on the air (radio) with a local DJ on KFYI over going out to eat and dinner prices.

Also another thing about KFYI- there is a food critic show, her name escapes me at the moment, well, she doesn't answer mails. I hunted all over the place for her email and either it didnt work or she wouldnt answer. She is probably computer illiterate and doesnt email much (incredbly I do see a fair amount of that still). Their lives are busy enough I suppose, but if you have a show dealing with the public, then you should answer questions occasionally.