After what seemed like an eternity, Chef Jose Garces’ newest Philadelphia restaurant, 24, finally opened its doors on Tuesday on the corner of 24th and Walnut. Boasting one of the best views in the city, with balcony seating overlooking the Schuylkill, the Italian-inspired menu offers 10 varieties of wood-fired pizza, pasta dishes and other entrees at affordable prices.
While I will eventually explore other areas of the menu, I had pizza on the brain and decided to sample a few different pies to start. Though it was hard to pick just one to feature, The Clam really caught me by the tastebuds.
I know what you're thinking: "Clam on pizza? Really?" But trust me on this — it was tasty.
What was immediately noticeable was the lightness of the dough. Made in-house over a three-day process, each slice was soft, thin and easily foldable — providing just enough cushion for the toppings. If you're a thick crust fan, however, have no fear — there's plenty of carby crust goodness here.
Parmesan cream and scamorza (an Italian cow’s milk cheese) made up the next layer on the pizza and was topped with crunchy bits of kale, finely cut garlic, calabrian chile, scallion and, of course, generous portions of fresh clam.
All-in-all, each bite was like a taste of the sea with a dash of saltiness courtesy of the clams, and the seaweed-like texture of the kale. The parmesan cream and scamorza combo made it super moist and the various spices added just enough kick to heat things up — but not too much.
It’s not for everyone, especially if you prefer red pies, but if you’re looking for unique pizza experience, The Clam is definitely worth a try.
If you’re drinking, a bubbly glass of Prosecco would complement this dish well and lucky for diners, 24 has it on draft.