Weekly Hot Spot : Original Pizza II
Original Pizza II is like a comfortable old couch, where you can put your feet on the sofa, unzip your pants a bit, and enjoy the best pizza in Orange County. It is located in the corner of a beach style industrial strip mall, called Back Bay Center, anchored by Pacific Ranch Market on Irvine Ave.
One end of the joint is a full-on bar atmosphere, with a bar running the extent of the wall, tables for groups to drink and eat together, and a TV mounted in the corner playing the latest game. The other end of the joint is typical pizza-restaurant-style, with wooden tables and benches. On the family side there are some gumball and toy machines along the wall for kids. And in the middle, across from where you order, there are some more kids’ games, like a monkey version of The Claw. Every time I visit, it is full of families sitting on that side. And the adult side is full of people enjoying fresh draft beer or cocktails. Comfortable.
Last night I went after leaving my office and got a pizza to go. The crust is hand ‘tossed,’ very tasty and one of thing we like best. It’s medium thickness, so it provides a good base for the sauce and toppings. I admit we do pop it on a pizza stone to crisp up the bottom because after the thirty minute drive home it does get a little soft. The tomato sauce tastes homemade as well, and is spiced just right. And the cheese and toppings are always fresh. It is run by the son of the original owner, Steve Kalatschan. He started Original Pizza on Newport Beach’s Balboa Peninsula, which is now closed. Original Pizza II is now on Google as Original Pizza.