Recent visitors to the Sala Daeng area might have noticed a tiny shopfront on the corner of Silom Road and Rama 4 that calls itself an “old times pizzeria.” Whether you were intrigued by the small wood-fired brick oven or discouraged by the dubiously low prices, you perhaps didn’t realize the place is actually connected to a much larger, greener, more laidback venue, a few minutes’ drive away. Sat in an open-air thatched hut in the front yard of a stately old home, much of Mama Dolores’ appeal lies in its relaxed atmosphere, but the food is no afterthought. The menu is mostly simple pastas, salads, and a few Mediterranean options thrown in, but the real highlight is the build-your-own pizzas. Away from the pizzas it can be a bit of a mixed bag. The Arabic salad (tomato, cucumber and onion with parsley and lemon, B140), for instance, comes with a tub of pungent tahini, but tastes almost like a Thai salad with its overly-acidic combination of lemon and onion and full cloves of garlic. The pastas are homey affairs; what the penne filet mignon (B350) lacks in subtlety, it makes up for in generous slabs of succulent steak and a comfortingly creamy, peppery sauce. The rib eye local steak (B380) is similarly well-cooked and comes served with fries that are nicely seasoned with chili and sea salt (though a little soggy on our last visit) and a slightly odd salad that pairs corn and a yogurt dressing. However, there’s a pretty good chance you’re here for the pizza, and that’s where Mama Dolores excels, on a budget. The 12-inch pizzas start at B99 for a margarita, and can be sexed up with a fairly standard list of toppings (B20-B80), including salami, fresh tomatoes, anchovies and olives. Since the swarms of red-uniformed staff aren’t too big on advice, it’s pretty much up to you. But we can say that the base has that pleasant crispness you only get from a wood-fired oven, and you get a decent coverage of local mozzarella (additional Italian mozzarella, B90) that doesn’t saturate the pizza. This is a nice, casual spot to gather a group of friends, get almost horizontal on the Thai-style triangle cushions and enjoy a steady stream of thin-crust pizza. A mood that could be further enhanced by the apparent plans for shisha and possibly live music in the future. Corkage B200.
|Mama Dolores, 20 Yen Akat Rd., Bangkok, Thailand
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