May 10, 2022: Pizzeria Via Mercanti is located at 188 Augusta Ave in Kensington Market in downtown Toronto.
After our small lunch/snack at Saigon Lotus, DH picked Pizzeria Via Mercanti as our next food hopping adventure. We were fooled by the online pictures with thinking there was an outdoor patio (this was actually the restaurant next door that had it), but we still went into Pizzeria Via Mercanti for the food.
I liked how authentically Italian the restaurant looked with the Italy flag and various other elements that seemed very Italian. They have a gigantic skylight that sets the entire restaurant in bright natural light. It appeared as bright as a patio even though we were indoors.
We were there at the odd hour of 3:30 p.m.-ish on a weekday so naturally there weren’t many other tables aside from ours. We were served cold water promptly and given the menu to browse through. Our orders came quickly. I could see the giant stone oven that was used to make our pizza.
A quick look at their website while writing this review, I learn that Pizzeria Via Mercanti serves authentic Napoletana pizza and has won multiple awards for their pizza. This was definitely confirmed with our order of the Salsiccia e Friarielli pizza (with fior di latte, rapini, and sausage). The pizza was round-shaped, had a thin gooey crust that tasted chewy but soft, and tasted great. Fior di latte is one of my favourite cheeses to put on pizzas and rapini is my preferred Italian vegetable. It was a great pizza that wasn’t salty at all.
We also ordered two antipasti to share: The Mozzarelline Fritte (breaded mini mozzarella balls) and Arancino di riso (handcrafted rice balls stuffed with mozzarella, parmigiano, peas, and ground beef). I loved that both came on a bed of fresh arugula and shredded cheese which helped to balance out the rich cheese of both. The mozzarella balls didn’t really ooze out with melted cheese upon cutting it open, and the cheese was also not overly salty either to my surprise. The arancini was just okay in my opinion. I think it was a little bit dry for my taste.
Glad we were able to try this authentic pizzeria on our short but nice visit to Kensington Market!