Review: Mombo's Pizza, Santa Rosa
It has been argued that there are really only two kinds of pizza places: by-the-slice and whole-pie. Usually a by-the-slice place sells pizza and maybe salads, and a whole-pie restaurant will have a wide variety of offerings. Maybe even beer.
Then there's Mombo's Pizza, a cultishly small restaurant near the Santa Rosa Junior College on Mendocino Avenue. The menu board here offers beer and sodas, pizza of several varieties by the slice, whole pies, sandwiches and piadinis, "amazing" salads, and a host of finger foods.
It has a college atmosphere to it: four large wooden tables grouped closely, ideal for hosting the crowd after a game. Several smaller tables sit in corners for the solitary diner or student hitting the books at lunch. The restaurant even gives a nod to NYC-rush lunches with a high counter for stand-up diners in a hurry.
The pizza is delicious, perfectly made—and by-the-slice servings are huge. Two slices covered a 15" pizza pan. Since just after Mombo's opened in Santa Rosa in 2002, it has consistently won the Bohemian's Best of the North Bay award, year after year after year. The second restaurant in Sebastopol that opened in 2005 has slightly different hours, but the same marvelous pizza.
In case you're not in a pizza mood, I can recommend the incredibly yummy spinach/pine nut salad. Fresh spinach, feta cheese, pine nuts and dried cranberries make the base, and I topped it with Mombo's raspberry vinaigrette and some grilled chicken.
I got my lunch in a to-go box, because I usually need to take away half of any restaurant salad. This salad was large, but so succulent it vanished in the same amount of time my dining companion polished off his three pepperoni slices! (This never happens; I'm a slow eater. But it did at Mombo's.)
Santa RosaAddress: 1880 Mendocino Avenue #B
Hours: Sun-Thur 10 AM – 11 PM; Fri-Sat 10 AM – midnight
SebastopolAddress: 560 Gravenstein Hwy N
Hours: 11 AM – 9 PM