Neapolitan pizzeria Fatto a Mano, recently opened its second site on Church Road in Hove. The restaurant, whose name means “made by hand” in Italian, serves wood-fired pizzas from a small, simple and reasonably priced menu.
Like Franco Manca, Fatto a Mano makes its pizza dough on site every day, allowing it to prove for a minimum of 24 hours, before topping and cooking at temperatures of over 450 degrees.
Visited: September 2016
Being able to see into the kitchen
Al fresco dining on a nice day
Service was better than at Morelli Zorelli
Really hot seating upstairs (possibly owing to the open kitchen, but also the humid day)
My pizza was overladen with rocket leaves detracting from the rest of the topping and the sourdough base
It’s more expensive than Franco Manca where the priciest pizza costs £6.95
We arrived on a Saturday evening and owing to the terrible weather had to forgo our idea of a lovely outside dining experience. We were seated on the second floor on a small table for two. Owing to the humid evening, open kitchen and a busy restaurant it was incredibly warm up there. We had to guzzle several glasses of water and fan ourselves with the menu to tolerate the heat, the fresh mint in the jug of water was a nice touch that kept us refreshed. Having said that, our seating offered a lovely view down into the open kitchen and of the iconic pizza oven.
We ordered the Norma Vegetariana (tomato, aubergine, smoked ricotta, mozzarella and basil) and a meaty pizza from the special’s board topped with rocket, gorgonzola and prosciutto, accompanied by a bottle of sauvignon blanc. The venue catered well for vegetarians with options beyond the usual cheese and tomato with offerings such as an interesting sounding ricotta and butternut squash salad, and rosemary fries too.
The service was prompt and courteous and the pizzas arrived quickly. I was a little disappointed with the amount of rocket on my pizza, there was so much that I found it hard to taste the more interesting toppings of gorgonzola and prosciutto , or indeed the pizza base.
The vegetarian pizza had a nice covering of toppings and the smoked ricotta really made the dish.
Overall the meal was pleasant, reasonably priced and served well. It may have been a better overall experience if the weather had permitted outdoor dining. With so much competition in the sourdough pizza space, Fatto a Mano will need to keep standards high to keep on top of their game, but I’m confident they can do it.
Overall verdict: (7/10)
Cost of food: Starters range from £3.50-£6.50 and Pizzas range from £5.50 – £9
Fatto a Mano, Hove
65-67 Church Rd,
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