August 25, 2011
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A skater theme runs throughout Johnny Rad’s. There are skating pictures and video around the establishment. Heck, the name Johnny Rad’s implies the possibility of an X-Games atmosphere. There is a long bar, a pinball machine, and a few James Bond posters littered about what could be an olde tyme tavern. All well and good, but how’s the food?
One of the specials that day was Risotto Balls. They were amazing! Filled with rice (duh), mushrooms, and cheese, they had a complex flavor. The rice may have been made with a veal stock, the seasoning tasted well beyond just salt and pepper, and there were little flecks of delicious mushroom littered throughout. No sauce or dipping concoction is necessary for these bad boys. If they are on the specials board when you visit, you simply must give them a try.
MG and I ordered the Pepe (large $15) topped with tomato sauce, pepperoni, chopped basil, fresh mozzarella and ground black pepper. Johnny Rad’s allows you to substitute in buffalo mozzarella for regular. We took advantage of the opportunity.
As you can see, the crust is thin. Nevertheless, the pizza tasted like it was slightly underdone. The pepperoni was kind of bland, but the fresh black pepper and slivers of basil brought the pie back to life. The sauce is tasty, but a little watery. This is definitely a pizza that needs toppings. Plain, it would lack complexity, but with toppings, it’s a very respectable pie.
Check out Johnny Rad’s menu online. They have a huge host of interesting toppings, plus plenty for the vegans in the audience.
2108 Eastern Avenue
Baltimore, MD 21231