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Margherita Pizza at SFOʻs Firewood Café
Next time you travel through San Francisco International Airport (SFO), schedule your flight around a Firewood Café pizza. This modest pizzeria is sandwiched in with other ethnic cafés around cafeteria style tables, seats, booths and nooks. My margherita pizza encounter at SFO was an unforgettable taste sensation.
SFO vs LAX
I recently traveled through California twice on a roundtrip. My first airport was SFO and my return airport was Los Angelos International Airport (LAX). Living in Hawaii, I always end up traveling through one of these two airports on my way to the east coast. I find SFO more travel friendly and enjoyable and plan to book SFO exclusively on future flights. SFO is smaller, better organized and more user friendly. LAX has twists and turns between gates with sports bars and eateries squashed throughout. SFO has an open lay out with good visibility, that features an art exhibit. I cruised through statues and paintings of Hindu Gods and Goddesses on display. Then I encountered my first Firewood Cafe pizza.
Fresh Ingredients and Crisp Crust
Fresh basil, tomato and mozzarella cheese topped a crunchy fresh baked crust that has my mouth watering in memory. Loaves of sour dough bread filled baskets adorning Firewoodʻs display case corners attest to the culinary skill here. Pizza is not the only item on Firewood Cafeʻs menu, but it is my comfort food. Firewoodʻs pizzas include margherita, prosscuitto, mushroom, italian sausage, and chicken pesto - all for around 10 dollars. You can also order a ceaser or garden salad, with your choice of over a dozen fresh condiments. Firewood has four eateries at SFO. The café I patroned was the smallest and located at terminal F, near gate 80. According to their website, a variety of main meals and pasta dishes are exclusive to each venue, fresh ingredients being a priority.
Healthy and Cheap
Brothers Garrett and Glenn Meyers have a simple philosophy: freshly prepared food without the expense. The two brothers first opened Firewood Café in the Castro District of San Francisco, in 1997. They've expanded Firewood Caféʻs healthy, hearty Californian/Mediterranean cuisine to 4 SFO Firewood eateries, 2 Firewood Cafés at Metreon Airport and 2 Firewood Grills in the Bay Area — with more to come.
Airport Ambience vs Red Carpet Club
My pizza comes in a cardboard box and I am surrounded by suitcases and travelers with lap tops open and cell phones chatting. The seats are comfortable enough. Amid the plastic plates, paper napkins and disposable cutlery is a sort of calm within the storm. Firewood Café is helpful here . . . they showcase fine wines available for sale by the bottle or glass. After two glasses of pinot noir I revisit the Indian art exhibit and wonder about people in the Red Carpet Club (RCC).
RCCs have free booze and food. According to SFO RCC reviews, the food is prepackaged and snack style, with fresh fruits available. RCC review photos reveal soft lighting, open bars and soft "sink in" chairs are the main attraction.
The two SFO Firewood Grills I missed have more ambience than the Firewood Cafés outside gate A-10 and gate 80. According to Firewood Caféʻs web site, a grill located at the terminal before security checkpoints has an open bar, booth style seats and a television. A Fireside Grill after security check points and closer to gate A-1 features similair luxuries. Next time I travel through SFO, I will stop in for one of the best pizzas I have ever had.