Monday, July 31, 2006

Pizza Grille - State Street, Lemoyne

901 State St
Lemoyne, PA 17043

Pizza Grille has been around for a while. It is a recipient of one of Harrisburg Magazine’s Favorite Awards. The Pizza Grille is a standard that should be on everyone’s BYOB list. Situated behind the West Shore Farmers Market, this location is one of two in the West Shore/Harrisburg area. The other location on Gettysburg Road has a liquor license and a very nice bar and wine list

My friends describe the décor as “utilitarian chic.” We agreed that the bright open, but simple restaurant reminded us of the patio of a summer cottage. The atmosphere is very friendly. Except perhaps for the loud, raucous laughter coming from our table, this place is great for conversation with a group of friends or a date or business meeting.

All but one in my group had been to Pizza Grille before. We each ordered our favorite pizzas and a half salad. One friend had the Greek Pizza. He said the flavors were in “perfect proportion.” Another ordered the traditional Pepperoni Pizza (with extra pepperoni, of course!). It was loaded with pepperoni and cheese and not at all greasy. My other friend had the Southwestern Pizza. This is not on the regular menu, but is often featured as a special. She had it once or twice before. It’s a delightful blend of steak, cilantro, peppers, tomatoes and cheese. One of her favorites. I had the Spring Pizza special – a white pizza with roasted red peppers and fresh asparagus and lots and lots of cheese – and half of the Chopped Salad. Yummy.

Although the name of this place is Pizza Grille, I must comment that the salads are worth the trip. Especially in the summer, I cannot get enough fresh veggies. The Chopped Salad here is a meal in itself. All the salads are delicious. This place has a wonderful way of combining unusual fresh ingredients in both the pizzas and salads – very unique and interesting combinations…not a pizzeria in the traditional sense. Very different, very fresh and very special.

I purposely wanted to have dessert so I only ate part of my pizza. Good move! I had the chocolate crème brulee. Not as chocolaty as I expected, but a nice finish to the meal. The others ordered peach and mango sorbets. Served in a hollowed out shell of the featured fruit, these sorbets are not only delicious but also fun to eat.

The wine we shared was a 2004 white French burgundy, Pouilly Fuisse from Jaboulet Vercherre. Very light and complementary to the pizzas. Served chilled, it was perfect for a summer night out.

The restaurant supplied the glasses and opened the bottle for us. The service was timely, personable and not intrusive. The evening was a very enjoyable experience. Pizza Grille will remain a Harrisburg BYOB classic.