Scarfone's Coal-Fired Pizza Needs a Little Work

High-heat, coal-fired ovens have lit up all over South Florida, bringing charred crusts and specialty toppings to just about every strip mall. Among them is Scarfone's, a modern pizzeria in the mold of Anthony's that recently debuted its second location in the Promenade at Coconut Creek. The cavernous bar and restaurant is poorly lit and peppered with odd design choices like white leather booths and curvy mosaic tile. At the center of the action is a pair of self-standing hearths capable of turning out pies in mere minutes. Unlike the thin-crust pies at most coal-oven joints, Scarfone's pizza is thicker than a typical, New York-style slice. But the overworked dough faces problems with consistency: It's often far too burnt near the edges and soggy as a wet sock in the middle. And if you plan on ordering toppings, don't even try to pick up your pizza with your hands – this is strictly knife-and-fork territory. Rounding out the menu are salads and the ubiquitous coal-fired chicken wings, plus an assortment of pastas and baked chicken specials, each under $15. Owner Danny Scarfone seems to have franchising in mind. But the basic formula needs some perfecting first.

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