La Piazza Al Forno, the ‘Italian Stallion’ of Glendale Pizza


A statue of an Italian Chef welcomes patrons to La Piazza Al Forno (Glendale)

A statue of an Italian Chef welcomes patrons to La Piazza Al Forno (Glendale)La Piazza al Forno is a small Italian restaurant nestled in the heart of Historic Glendale. This place isn’t your average neighborhood pizzeria because it serves a unique type of pizza called Neapolitan. These floury concoctions are fluffy not doughy and they’re made with quality ingredients in a brick oven.
Their entrees are large but they’re light, fresh and aromatic. Al Forno knows how to capture authentic Italian flavors and each dish is strikingly complex. Pastas are cooked to perfection and each selection inspires the taste buds. My favorite was the chicken marsala, which had a perfect texture. The sautéed mushrooms popped while the onions and cheese mixed in a beautiful blend that elevated the dish.
Cheesecake drizzled in raspberry syrup and Ricotta stuffed cannoli from La Piazza AL Forno (Glendale)

In 2008, Al Forno was visited by Guy Fieri and featured on his show Diners. Drive ins and dives. The exceptional quality of the food makes this place a west valley gem. The décor is not over the top and I didn’t feel rushed. The wait staff is knowledgeable but lacked timeliness.
If you’re in a big group prepare to wait awhile to be seated, the restaurant is small but the ambiance is soothing. The dim lighting makes dining here a warm experience and because it’s only opened in the evening it’s a perfect place where couples won’t be interrupted by large families. The brick oven sits in the middle of the restaurant and the open concept somehow makes the modest space seem bigger.
Portions are satisfying but not overwhelming. Entrée sizes allow me to enjoy my meal without feeling like I was indulging. You cannot go wrong with the Quattro Formaggio, a rigatoni dish cooked with four cheeses in fresh sauce. Other exquisite specialties like the Dolce Diavolo, pizza features Calabrian chiles, basil and a honey drizzle, an absolute steal at $15. For dessert I went with the Zeppolis, little fried delights cover in powdered sugar that were reminiscent of donuts. Anyone visiting should end the meal with an espresso or cappuccino because it seemed to help with the digestion.
If you plan on visiting La Piazza Al Forno, make sure to bring your appetite because there isn’t an item on the menu that’s not appetizing. The blend of ingredients and the rewarding textures are definitely something to experience.