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ChaCha’s, Penfield


The wood-fired pizza trend in the Rochester area continues. A recent entrant is ChaCha’s WoodFired Bar & Grill in Penfield. It’s in the former site of Angus House & Lounge, a steakhouse that folded in 2015.
My daughter and I had dinner at ChaCha’s a few weeks ago. We sat in the bar area, the better to watch the pizzaiolo prepare our pies. On our weeknight visit, things were modestly busy, and it was a pleasant setting, with red- and orange-painted walls that I’d call lurid were it not for the star of the show, the blazing pizza oven.
According to their online menu, ChaCha’s pizzas are “100% wood fired” – no gas “assistance” – and the “oven cooks at 720 degrees resulting in a crisp and always delicious pizza!” Based on this visit, I won’t disagree.
A number of ChaCha’s specialty pizzas sounded good, but I got my usual Margherita. My daughter, as is also usual, went the carnivorous route, with a “Meat Monster.”
The crust on both pies was quite good: thin, charred underneath but not burned, and still pliable. It had a chewy texture, and a fresh-bread flavor, accented by toasty notes. The edge was shaped into a well-formed cornicione, which in the photo may make the pie look a little deeper than it was.
The cornicione was only a little darkened, suggesting that the floor of the oven was quite hot, but that the pizza had not been put too close to the flame in the back. Some wood-fired devotees might like the edge a bit more charred, but I preferred this to some pies I’ve had that are pale underneath, and then given a quick charring along the perimeter, just to give the pizza that wood-fired look.
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Source:: Rochester NY Pizza