The pizza oven is fired up once again on the corner of 21st and S streets. Trick Pony takes over the space formerly occupied by Tuli Bistro, the celebrated midtown eatery that shut down suddenly in February.
The eatery’s undergone a slight remodel, and the menu streamlined significantly compared to Tuli, and now focuses almost exclusively on pizza. Trick Pony’s owners also run Capital Dime, which opened in July at 18th and L streets.
To head Trick Pony’s pizza-oriented kitchen, the owners tapped Paul Caravelli, a former Chicago-area chef who was first brought to Sacramento by former Tuli chef/co-owner Adam Pechal. Caravelli and Pechal were also co-contestants on the ABC cooking show “The Taste” and are roommates in Sacramento.
Like a newborn colt, Trick Pony’s first steps were a little shaky. One of its owners told The Bee in April that he was “tired of driving two hours to get a really good pizza” – a remark that ruffled a few foodie feathers, with many citing such prime local pizza spots as Masullo, OneSpeed and Hot Italian.
But food enthusiasts can be a forgiving bunch if the product is on point. Here’s what you can expect thus far from the newly minted Trick Pony:
And as far as food goes, that’s it for now.
The pizzas are cooked in a wood-fired oven and served unsliced, per Italian tradition. Each pizza order comes with a knife and you’re encouraged to “grip it and rip it” when cutting slices yourself. Pizzas are also served with two housemade dipping sauces – hot oil and pesto – for a touch that’s closer to Pizza Hut than Neapolitan traditions but delicious nonetheless.