Mar 1, 2024 - Food and Drink

Take the ferry to pizza at Bruciato on Bainbridge Island

A pizza with puffed and blistered crust and dobs of buffalo mozzerella and whole basil leaves on a red sauce, sitting on a white plate on a wood table.

The Margherita DOC at Bruciato. Photo: Melissa Santos/Axios

I was bummed recently about the closure of Bar Solea, Brendan McGill's trattoria on the edge of Pioneer Square that I thought made some of the city's best pizza.

So I decided to board the ferry a few weeks ago to check out McGill's other pizzeria on Bainbridge Island, Bruciato, which focuses on Neapolitan-style pies.

The vibe: The place is romantic enough for a date night, but also not so stuffy that you can't bring your carb-loving kid (which I did).

Best bites: I loved the Margherita DOC pizza here, which I always order as a test of a Neapolitan pizza joint.

  • This minimalist pie with buffalo mozzarella and basil should be somewhat soft in the middle, with some blackened spots on the crust — but not to the point that you're tasting burned dough.
  • Bruciato gets it right, adhering to the laws of Naples pizza (which are very specific) to a T.
  • The result: a lighter type of pie that a single person can easily devour.
Sausage pizza with basil on it, uncut with scissors provided on a plate.
The salsiccia pizza at Bruciato. Photo: Melissa Santos/Axios

What to try: My colleague Christine Clarridge — who joined me for this excursion — and I also liked the amatriciana pizza, which featured dots of guanciale (pork cheek); the salsiccia (sausage) pizza, which will hit the spot for meat lovers; and the mezzaluna, a crescent moon-shaped calzone with sweet chocolate-hazelnut filling.

If you go: The pizza is served whole, with scissors provided to cut slices for sharing.

Stop by: They don't take reservations. 12–9pm Friday through Sunday; 3–9pm Monday through Thursday.

  • Address: 236 Winslow Way East, Bainbridge Island
A moon-shaped dough creation with chocolate drizzled over it and some powdered sugar sprinkled on top.
The mezzaluna at Bruciato is more balanced and less overwhelmingly sweet than some versions of this dish. Photo: Melissa Santos/Axios
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