Pepenero @ The Beer Emporium: Review

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We love The Beer Emporium on King Street. Head in at street level and walk down the stairs, and you’re faced with a beautiful subterranean venue with a real sense of atmosphere thanks to its vaulted red brick ceilings – and an amazing selection of beers that offers a vast amount of choice to suit all tastes.

We’re regular visitors – but in the past, it’s always been for Friday or Saturday night drinks, rather than for food. That all changed recently, though, when an evening out with friends needed sustenance in order to be able to continue…

The food at The Beer Emporium is provided by Pepenero – an authentic, family-run Italian pizzeria who can be found both here and at The Full Moon. They operate from the kitchen that can be seen through one of the arched openings in The Beer Emporium’s cavernous space, with a separate dining area cordoned off for those looking to eat rather than just to drink.

 

Pepenero at The Beer Emporium - Kitchen

 

The Pepenero menu has something for everyone: meaty, veggie and vegan pizzas alike, with the pizza bases and tomato sauce all made from scratch. Dairy, dairy-free, meaty (including individual types of meat) and non-meat ingredients are all prepared with different utensils to avoid cross-contamination…and it’s not just pizzas you’ll find on the menu either – there’s a whole host of starters, antipasti, pasta dishes, soups and sides too.

For us, though, it was all about the pizza, available either with a 12-inch base or as 20-inch sharing pizzas. We each decided to order our own, individual 12-inch options…

For me, it was the Napoli (£9.95), topped with mozzarella, anchovies, capers and olives. The base was absolutely fantastic – chewy and doughy with the requisite crispy bits around the edges, and packed full of flavour.

The toppings were generous too: green and black olives that were still meaty and firm, and the anchovies with a lovely melt-in-the-mouth saltiness. With the brined capers on top too, the saltiness could have been too much…but the incredible freshness of the tomato sauce offered a great contrast and a hint of sweetness, topped off with a decent amount of creamy, melted mozzarella.

 

Pepenero at The Beer Emporium - Napoli Pizza

 

I had a funny feeling that Chris would order the Meat Lover (£13.95)…and I wasn’t wrong! A feast of mozzarella, tomato sauce, sausage, chicken, Napoli salami, ham, bacon and BBQ sauce, it looked far more like an American-style pizza when it arrived. Again, he was impressed with the base – and due to the number of toppings, it was more of a knife and fork job rather than picking up individual slices.

He was impressed with the quality of the meaty toppings: the chicken succulent and shredding easily under the fork, the huge slices of Napoli salami, the small chunks of salty ham and bacon and the crumbled sausage, which was quite fatty but had a beautiful flavour with a hint of fennel. His one criticism? Too much BBQ sauce, which was tasty enough, but which overwhelmed the rest of the flavours on the pizza.

 

Pepenero at The Beer Emporium - Meat Lover Pizza

 

Price and quality-wise, we were certainly impressed – we’d definitely head back to try more of the Pepenero menu. We love the fact that they cater for a range of dietary requirements (there are gluten-free bases available too), and the location means that you can wash your meal down with a decent beer too. What’s not to love?

 

One Response to Pepenero @ The Beer Emporium: Review

  1. These pizzas look so Yummm..!!Very juicy and delicious. Wish I could grab them from screen itself;)

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