Friday, February 5, 2010


Earlier this week I did a sporadic thing by hopping on a plane to Cancun with a friend for no apparent reason other than to get out of frigid New York. Other than an hour-long foray into Tijuana (which I don't think counts), I hadn't been to Mexico before or the Caribbean in general for that matter.

I'd never taken a vacation to a destination where the most popular thing to do is nothing, so after a day of laying on the beach, I started to get antsy. What better way to explore a new place by trying to find the best pizza in town?

After dusting off the cobwebs from my high-school Spanish education, I decided to ask around. I was starting to get discouraged when the first three responses were, "Domino's." I knew I was in a tourist trap, but there had to be something better. Something with a brick oven, perhaps? "Sí, estás buscando por Pizzeria Rolandi." Rolandi it is.

We headed for the less-touristy downtown Cancun to find Rolandi, a semi-open air pizzeria with a wood-fired oven.

While we browsed the menu, we were brought a wood-fired pita and Mexican Coca-Cola (I'd be an idiot not too, right?). Mexican Coke differs from the stuff in the states because they actually use sugar as a sweetener instead of high-fructose corn syrup, giving it a crisper, less-"gunky" aftertaste. I'm not a huge soda drinker, but it goes great with some pizza.

My friend ordered the Margherita and I ordered the "Che," essentially a Margherita with some Roquefort cheese. Minutes later...

This was the Margherita. Pretty cheesy with not a lot of basil, but the deliciously sweet tomato sauce had no problem fighting it's way through to our taste buds. There wasn't a whole lot of charring going on, and the pie was a bit wet in the middle, but it was still pretty decent.

I couldn't tell if my "Che" had less sauce than the Margherita or if the Roquefort was just a bit too overpowering, but it tasted more like a white pie than a red in comparison to the Margherita we were served.

I'm starting to develop a liking towards blue cheeses on my pizzas, but only in small doses. Most blues are so unbelievable strong, they'll completely steal the show. Like any good pizza, there should be a healthy balance between crust, sauce, and cheese, and a lot of places go a little too crazy with strong cheese.

Rolandi straddled this line, but ultimately it was delicious and I scarfed the whole thing (when don't I?). While I wish I had a longer stay in Cancun to soak up some more cosmic rays and continue my pizza exploration, I'm just glad I didn't settle for Domino's.

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