100 Favorite Dishes

81: White Anchovy, Tomato and Fresno Chile Pizza at Pizzeria Mozza

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Fri, Jul 6, 2012 at 12:18 PM

click to enlarge White Anchovy, Tomato and Fresno Chile Pizza - FLICKR/NICOLA
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  • White Anchovy, Tomato and Fresno Chile Pizza
Leading up to this year's Best of L.A. issue (due out Oct. 4), we'll be counting down, in no particular order, 100 of our favorite dishes.

81: White Anchovy, Tomato and Fresno Chile Pizza at Pizzeria Mozza.

The mere mention of anchovies doesn't evoke pleasant memories for most people. Maybe someone dared you to order it as a pizza topping during a childhood slumber party. Perhaps your older brother snuck one onto a slice when you weren't looking.

But now you're older and (hopefully) wiser, and just like the Dr. Seuss character who was finally convinced to try green eggs and ham, the combined pizza influence of Nancy Silverton and Mario Batali might actually be enough to persuade you to take the plunge and discover how devilishly delicious the pungent anchovy can be.

It starts with Mozza's famous crusts -- chewy and dense, undulated with dozens of yeasty air pockets -- spread with a bright brick-red tomato sauce, sharp enough in its acidity to remind you of the summer sun. A dotting of pulverized green chiles is added, lending a lingering, herbaceous heat. On top are a few salt-packed alici di menaica anchovies, funky with maritime tang, curled up on the pizza into compact little umami bombs. Each component stands out like a vibrant pluck of a violin string, forming a kind of salty-tangy-funky harmony. Could you convince a 12-year-old version of yourself to eat this? Doubtful, but the grown-up in you knows better.

Check out the rest of our 100 of our favorite dishes. Suggestion? Write us a comment.

100: Lukshon's Dan Dan Noodles

99: Cemita de Milanesa at Cemitas Poblanos Elviritas #1

98: Chichen Itza's Cochinita Pibil

97: Tsukemen at Tsujita L.A.

96: La Cevicheria's Bloody Clam Ceviche

95: Duck Shawarma at Momed

94: Peruvian Chicken at Pollo a la Brasa

93: Squash Blossom Quesadilla at Antojitos Carmen

92: Thai Boat Noodles at Pa-Ord

91: Baco Mercat's Bazole

90: Furikake Kettle Corn at A-Frame

89: Live Santa Barbara Spot Prawns at Providence

88: Fried Pig Tails at Night + Market

87: Egg Salad Sandwich at Euro Pane

86: Galbi Jjim at Soban

85: Truffle Honey-Laced Fried Chicken at Manhattan Beach Post

84: Mool Naeng Myun at Yu Chic Naeng Myun

83: Chicken Vampiro at Mexicali Taco & Co

82: Sooo Cali Dog at Dog Haus

Want more Squid Ink? Follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook. Reach the author at gsnyder@laweekly.com or follow him on Twitter at @searchanddevour.

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