Monday, August 10, 2015

Rancho Pizzeria in Coleman--So worth a road trip!!!

The owners of the celebrated Rancho Loma in Valera have opened a contemporary pizzeria in downtown Coleman called Rancho Pizzeria. As Rancho Loma is one of my all time favorite dining experiences, you know I had to make the 100 mile round trip to try some of their pizza.
Exterior--no outside signage at the moment

The decor is industrial chic with some West Texas nostalgia mixed in. Inside there are about 8 high backed booths, 3-4 tables for two, a large group seating area at the front and a private dining room in the back. All this to say, it isn't all that large of a restaurant. Peak times may mean a wait, especially as word spreads about them. A bar with some additional seating runs along one sided adjacent to the chef station and brick oven. Service was friendly, prompt and professional.
Art above the bar

We ordered the olive tapenade with goat cheese ($7) as an appetizer. It was served with toasted bread. Loved it!!! My favorite item of the night. I believe that Chef Trueblood, that owned the now shuttered Bonterra Blu in Clyde, where I adored the olive tapenade on his salads is part of the Rancho Pizzeria team...pretty sure it was him making the pizza when we were there. Yes, you can see them preparing the food which is fun. One of the owners was also around chatting with customers.
Olive tapenade with goat cheese

I also got a small Cesare salad and my husband ordered a small house salad. Both were very good made with super fresh, high quality ingredients.  The Gorgonzola cheese on the house salad was gorgeous and plentiful. The dressing on my salad was super flavorful, if a bit heavy on the capers. The romaine was crisp. Both a bargain at $5 and $4 each. Larger entree sized salads are also available.
Caesar salad

The 12" pizzas are wood fired in a brick oven and are big enough for two to share, particularly if you have an entree and a salad as we did but we tried two of them anyway.  My husband got the carne pizza with  crushed tomatoes, prosciutto, Italian sausage, pepperoni, fontina cheese, and Calabrian chiles ($18).  It was the highest priced on the menu. It also had fresh shaved Parmesan on top.  I had the fungi ($14) pizza that was topped with roasted shiitake mushrooms, bechamel sauce, fontina cheese, roasted garlic, and white truffle oil.

Carne pizza

The crust on my husband's pizza was crisp yet tender and the taste of the meats really popped with the addition of the peppers. It was simply delicious. The mushroom pizza had an expected earthy flavor, with the shiitake and tuffle oil, and the unexpected arugula. The garlic was subtle. However, the crust was just a little underdone. You need to really, really like mushrooms if you order this pizza. I like mushrooms but shiitakes are not my favorite. The surprise arugula topping was too bitter for me and, admittedly, I missed the tomato sauce. Maybe if the roasted garlic had been more pronounced I wouldn't have missed it as much. The menu also includes a classic Margherita (tomato sauce, mozzarella, fresh basil) on the menu as well as the pepperoni, sausage, and arugula with prosciutto. Next time, I'm getting the Greek salad, a pepperoni pizza and my husband is hankering for the meatball appetizer.  There will DEFINITELY be a return trip!

Fungi pizza
The meal was certainly worth the drive from Abilene and if you are passing through Coleman on a Wednesday-Sunday during their open hours, you should eat there. You won't regret it. We had leftovers for the next day.

Please note that substitutions are not allowed on the pizzas and there is no "create your own" option. However, at times there are specials for the lunch or dinner service such as lasagna or steak if pizza is not your favorite. Check their Facebook page for current offerings. Reservations are not accepted, unless booking the private dining room.

There is a small but thoughtful beer and wine selection available and occasional live music. The do takeout if not slammed with dine-in patrons.

  • Monday: Closed
  • Tuesday: Closed
  • Wednesday: 11am2pm, 5pm9pm
  • Thursday: 11am2pm, 5pm9pm
  • Friday: 11am2pm, 5pm10pm
  • Saturday: 11am10pm
  • Sunday: 11am3pm
If you are traveling on 84 between Abilene and Brownwood, you will need to make a detour to get to Commercial which is right off 153 and 206.

414 S. Commercial
Coleman, TX 76834
(325) 726-9307

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