Katy Pie

Pizza Bella

We also took home an Italian hero and a meatball hoagie for later examination. The hero proved to have only a few skimpy slices of flaccid Genoa salami, along with some pepperoni and Canadian bacon that had escaped uncooked from the pizza-topping tubs. Lettuce and tomato dressed with mayo and mustard weakly topped it off. In a word: Fuhgeddaboutit! The oven-baked meatball sandwich, on the other hand, was outstanding. The tomato sauce melded perfectly with the soft inner part of the Italian roll, while the outer crust stayed quite crisp. The big spicy meatball was neatly cut into slices, and a cloak of melted provolone held the whole thing together.

We were still working on our salads when the sausage combo pizza arrived. Pizza Bella makes its own Italian sausage; it's mild with a trace of the licorice aroma of fennel. But the pizza was loaded up with too much sauce, too much sausage and too much other junk (mushrooms and slices of canned olives). The gooshy ingredients pushed the fabulous crust beyond the limit of its carrying capacity. By the time we had all eaten a slice, the pizza was starting to get soggy.

I chose the sausage combo from Pizza Bella's menu because it had only three ingredients besides mozzarella and tomato sauce. But even that was too many. I would never order most of the other pizzas on the menu.

What Mario Flores doesn't do at Pizza Bella is as important as what he does.
Troy Fields
What Mario Flores doesn't do at Pizza Bella is as important as what he does.

Location Info


Pizza Bella

1306 Pin Oak Road
Katy, TX 77494

Category: Restaurant > Pizza

Region: Outside Houston


281-693-3880. Hours: Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Spinach salad: $3.65
Caesar salad: $3.65
Meatball hoagie: $5.95
Margherita pizza: (medium)$10.55
Sausage combo pizza:(medium)$12.85

1306 Pin Oak Road, Katy

Here are a few examples: The barbecue chicken pizza, with grilled chicken, onions, tomatoes, roasted peppers, cheddar, mozzarella and barbecue sauce (wouldn't this taste better on a taco?); the tropicale, with Canadian bacon, roasted onions, mozzarella, pineapple, goat cheese and tomato sauce (was this invented by a pregnant woman?); the Thai pizza, with spicy peanut sauce, teriyaki chicken, sweet peppers, green onions, mozzarella, sesame seeds and chile flakes (c'mon, it doesn't sound like pizza or Thai food); and quattro formaggi, the classic Italian pizza with four kinds of cheese, made here with additions of sausage and mushrooms (why do you need sausage and mushrooms on a pizza with four kinds of cheese?).

I fear that to a large percentage of readers, these concoctions might sound good. This is the way a lot of people eat pizza. I will never get used to it, but who cares? I may not approve of the meat lover's pizza (actually they call it a molto carne here and load it with sausage, pepperoni, Canadian bacon, mushrooms, tomatoes, black olives, mozzarella and tomato sauce), but that doesn't matter.

If Hines Harrison at Pizza Bella can satisfy people who want to order kitchen-sink pies, and yet still produce a hand-thrown crispy crust that tastes good to me, he is my hero. But I dare you "meat lovers" to try a margherita at Pizza Bella for a change. Or "create your own" using garlic and olive oil instead of tomato sauce. For toppings, get a little Italian sausage and roasted peppers with a tiny bit of mozzarella. Or try anchovies, kalamata olives and green onions with no cheese at all.

Lord knows I'm not usually a "less is more" type when it comes to food. But the handmade crust at Pizza Bella really shines if you lighten up a little.

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