How I've longed for a restaurant like this, one where you can pick and choose from great ingredient after great ingredient, none of them marred by chefy indulgence. After all, what more could anyone hope to do with such amazing carpaccio as D'Angelo's spada ($10), hoary sheets of swordfish sliced so thin as to be sheer. Those waves are left completely unclouded by accent, aside from a glistening sheen of olive oil and a scattering of thyme. The latter braces against the cool, sweet flesh like a lost lover. Even when there's room for subjectivity in D'Angelo, it's hard to fault the process. For instance, some of us found the tempura-battered zucchini flowers stuffed with mozzarella ($10) to be underseasoned. But why oversalt a flavor as delicate as these green blossoms anyway?

In the end, though, not one of us could muster a complaint about anything that came out of the wood-burning oven. The warmth given up by that hearth seems to transfer the soul of those pizzamakers right into the food. A frittata served in a searing-hot iron skillet was an eggy custard of such simultaneous lightness and depth that it was like pure impossibility given form ($9). And of course, there's the pizza. After numerous visits, I keep going back to the Contadina pie ($11). It's just so perfectly balanced: the gamey sausage against grassy, intense dabs of ricotta. A coworker claims that the Angelo topped with arugula and prosciutto de parma is the best. Either way, it's all in the crust. Like good bread, that thin layer is so light and flavorful that you practically visualize golden fields of wheat as you eat it. D'Angelo's pizza is so perfectly cooked — with the faintest amount of char and exact level of doneness — that if it doesn't put the final stamp in the coal-versus-wood debate, no pie will.

Location Info

Map

D'Angelo

4215 N. Federal Highway
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33308

Category: Restaurant > Italian

Region: Beaches

Details

D'Angelo, 4215 N. Federal Highway, Oakland Park. Open 11:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 11:30 a.m. to midnight Friday and Saturday, and 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday. Call 954-561-7300, or click here.

Click here to see photos from D'Angelo Pizza.

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But in the end, it's the Italian tradition of sampling that really grabs you at D'Angelo. The menu is so vast and varied, you could come here for weeks on end and not try it all. The portions aren't huge, and there are no main courses. And you probably won't leave with a doggy bag of goopy pasta. After my last visit, I'm still visualizing the menu like pictures out of Batali's book. It has shaped up to be one fine-looking centerfold.

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