Growing up in the San Gabriel Valley, I had a lot of Asian eateries to choose from. Whatever Asian I was in the mood for, nothing was out of reach. Having this luxury had its drawbacks. Anything else, I had to choose from a small group of restaurants — No really good burger joints, gastropubs, Italian or Mexican. One place though, Petrillo’s Pizzeria, is one place I do remember in the SGV that isn’t Asian. Naturally, they were known for their pizzas, and I remember they were my favorite pizza place growing up. How I got back here after all of these years was by chance. Boiling crab was nearly a 2 hour wait, and my family wanted to celebrate our little cousin’s birthday. Petrollo’s, though a bit of a drive east, just popped into my head. There, we had an Italian
We started off with soup/salad with bread and butter. The salad was fresh but nothing extraordinary. The bread though, was soft and delicious with the butter. The minestrone soup was average as well.
I, for the last time, ordered the Pizza bianca. In my head, it tasted spectacular, but was not a fan amongst me and my family. Brushed with extra virgin olive oil, it was topped with mozzarella cheese, Romano cheese, fresh tomatoes and fresh basil. The balance wasn’t right. It didn’t have enough of a robust flavor. It lacked taste and nobody really went back for a second slice — nobody even ate their first slice. Yes, my family wasted food.
Before you judge us, we did gobble up the Petrillo’s Specialty supreme combination pizza. Topped with mozzarella cheese, tomato sauce, Italian sausage, mushrooms, pepperoni, salami, garlic, onions, and green peppers, this pizza had a bunch of flavor. The ingredients were all fresh, especially the Italian sausage. The mozzarella cheese made a big presents and the flavors worked well all together. Pizza Bianca was out, and the supreme combination was in.
Along with pizzas, we ordered pastas as well. In our family, our eyes are always bigger than our stomachs. My favorite was probably the Canneloni. It was cheese and gooey — the pasta was perfectly cooked. The tomato sauce, though simple was something I desired. It was a classic, simplified and almost genuine tomato sauce.
The classic dish of spaghetti was delicious — the tomato sauce on the Spaghetti was perfect. The noodles were cooked al dente and the sauce was the star. And the meatballs? My cousin praised the meatballs saying they were really good. I didn’t have a chance to try it, and yes, I blame my family for that. Sharing is caring, and with this logic, my cousin does not care about me. All kidding aside, this classic dish deserves a chance.
It was a great time. I felt like a real Italian. With the family gathered all on one table eating and sharing food, I couldn’t ask for anything more. Times like this makes life enjoyable and all of that is centered around food. I don’t need money or a nice car or a big house. With a nice meal and all of my family around the table, life was simple. It was these simple things that I find pleasure in.