I need your help on this one folks. I know that Pizza Luna is directly in the line of the tourist trade and isn’t actually aiming at locals, but surely it cannot be as shockingly bad as I experienced the other day? Perhaps the chef was away? They were having a bad week? I was having a bad week?
Let me explain, then maybe you can chip in your experiences and I can see whether there was just one gigantic blip going on the day I went or whether it truly is appalling.
Walking inside I didn’t really hear any serious alarm bells. Simple wooden tables and bright, average-looking decor, mismatched cheap china and a menu with absolutely bog-standard pizza/pasta choices – well, that describes some of my favourite eateries. So often the plainest menu creates the most delicious food, so in the spirit I ordered a basic pizza and a cup of tea – it seemed that sort of place.
Still it seemed good. The waitress was utterly charming and the place was full – admittedly of people with rucksacks, bumbags and guide books. I was by the window and enjoying the general bustle of a Greenwich Saturday afternoon.
My tea arrived. A teapot. More marks. Sadly it turned out to be a pot of the motorway services variety, and it promptly evacuated itself all over the table, which meant I had to use my only paper napkin to mop it up. What was left of the tea was perfectly drinkable though and I was still happy.
My pizza arrived. At first glance it wasn’t bad – clearly made in some sort of frame or pan, it had all the requisite colours and I tucked in.
I have never eaten such a poor pizza in my life. I have no idea whether they actually WERE using supermarket ‘basics’ brand frozen versions – but it certainly tasted like it. The bottom of the base was like a biscuit – completely dry (though not crispy) on the outside, yet curiously pale – this was not an over-baked example. But if all the moisture was out of the bottom, the middle of the dough was totally uncooked, with that grey line that underdone pastry takes. The top of the base was just soggy – wet pastry. On top, flaccid tomato and onion watery stuff floated, gathering in the centre.
On the table next to me, a German couple called over the waitress, checking to see whether what they had ordered was actually what they had received, as they couldn’t tell. She went off, then came back and sunnily announced that yes, they had what they had ordered. The German man sniffed again at it and shook his head, but nevertheless had a go.
I was trying to eat my own pizza, with little success. It just wasn’t going down. No point in sending it back – they all looked exactly the same. A family left, leaving most of what they had ordered. I have been brought up to clear my plate, but I didn’t manage even half of this meal. The German couple left, leaving most of theirs, too.
I paid up (leaving a tip for the waitress – she was the one good bit about this experience) and nipped to the loo. The door locked using a screw, and the flush was a bit of nylon wire sticking out of a hole with “pull” scrawled in black marker pen on the wall.
Pizza Luna isn’t, actually, the worst meal I have eaten in Greenwich. But it bothers me that this place, so obviously aiming at foreign tourists, is just taking the cash and running, knowing it won’t get a repeat booking, and contributing to the World’s idea that British food is crap.
So please. Tell me. Was this all some horrible blip? Is it normally tasty food? I am prepared to be guided by you on this one. Should I go back and check this out again, in the knowledge that most of you think it’s a great place? Or is my dismal experience sadly typical?