I had just finished a meeting downtown and stopped in at a grocery store for some road nosh for my long trip back to The Park. In the deli, on a shelf, a lone calzone called out to me. Seemed like an easy thing to eat while driving, and I had never had a calzone before.
One bite and I just about threw it out the window. Is this what a calzone is supposed to taste like? Debatable deli meats cemented to coagulated cheese and stone cold, greasy dough? Yuck. Then I remembered Liane Faulder posting a blurb on her blog about a new calzone place on 118 Avenue called Battista’s. I turned my car around.
Open since October 9th, Battista’s shares a building with Saffron, a Caribbean restaurant that I had never noticed before. Both had bright new paint jobs; two colourful facades brightening up 118 Ave. Nice.
I walked in and was greeted with a hearty hello from somewhere behind racks and trays and ovens. Battista was hard at work. Business must’ve been good that day because there were no more Classico calzones (filled with mozzarella, genoa salami, capicollo ham and onions) which was too bad because that’s exactly the kind I picked up from the store (which will remain unnamed) downtown. I went with the Spicy Italian (Italian sausage, red and green peppers, onions and olive oil) instead. I knew it was going to be good just by the aroma and the warm, hefty weight of it in my hands.
There was no way I’d be able to eat and drive with this one; I was salivating already and I hadn’t even opened the package. I took a bite. Oh yeahhhh. Do you remember an old cartoon called Quick Draw McGraw where a dog named Snuffles would float up, hug himself and moan with joy when he received a dog biscuit? After one bite, that was me. I felt just like Snuffles.