Veganizza, 34-40 Grey Street, Newcastle, NE1 6AE – Visit Now
As we keep saying, a vegan diet isn’t just for that post-Christmas month, it’s for life, or at least something to weave into your daily dining habits – and this is where Veganizza comes in. Currently based in Newcastle and Glasgow, they’re delivering their bake-at-home pizzas nationwide throughout lockdown, and possibly beyond.
A sister company to the excellent Pizza Punks, which we reviewed late last year, rather than DIY pizzas where you make the dough and place the ingredients yourself (everything provided), the Veganizza pizzas are all ready-made and simply need sticking in the oven. And the clue is in the name, these are all-vegan pizzas, from topping to dough, though in a blind taste test you couldn’t tell the difference. But of course, that’s not the point, these pizzas aren’t pretending to be carnivore-food, they’re displaying the versatility of pizzas and just how far this style of plant-based dining has come in recent years.
They display the versatility of pizzas and just how far this style of plant-based dining has come in recent years
But the cheese, I hear you cry. Admittedly, vegan cheese generally has a bad reputation but I’m not sure how Veganizza has done it but the vegan cheese used here is indistinguishable from its dairy counterpart. It melts, it goes stringy, it tastes magnificent. For this review, I try the blistered red pepper and aubergine pizza and the ‘nduja.
The red pepper and aubergine option doesn’t have a sauce base, opting for garlic oil and blobs of cashew basil pesto instead, with thick chunks of roasted aubergine and strips of charred red pepper on top, along with a few rocket leaves. It’s a superb combination, bright and sweet, with each mouthful delivering a multi-layered blast of flavour, completely different from the last. But it’s the sourdough that makes it. Light and chewy, dark and bubbly where it matters and sturdy enough to hold all the toppings without breaking. These are crusts designed to be dipped in sauce – reduce some passata down with garlic and add some basil leaves at the end.
Each pizza is enough for two people, or one very hungry person
The ‘nduja is another winner. Slightly more expensive, this pizza comes topped with white sauce, vegan buffalo mozzarella, vegan n’duja, stem broccoli and sun-dried tomatoes. It provides a sharper tangier taste and the thin stems of broccoli add a pleasing earthiness.
Each pizza is enough for two people, or one very hungry person who happens to be reviewing it. Pricewise, they compare well to practically every other high-street pizza place but more than this, these creations demonstrate a deep knowledge of plant-based dining you won’t find anywhere else when it comes ethical fast food.