Pulcinella Ristorante is the second branch of a Pulcinella that opened two years ago in Katy, Texas. For its Dallas offshoot, it staked out a challenging location to make pizza—on Henderson, smack between old-school Louie’s to the east and the unimpeachable Fireside Pies to the west.
Still, Pulcinella could have a chance since it goes for authentic Italian, using all au courant tools of the trade like a brick oven and upscale ingredients such as prosciutto and basil. But with this style of pizza, it all boils down to the crust, and unfortunately Pulcinella’s was “just okay.” It was thin and mildly chewy but with zero personality.
Carpaccio was pretty good, with thinly sliced beef seasoned with lemon, pepper, Parmesan cheese, and a heap of baby arugula leaves in vinaigrette. The chopped salad was not chopped. The rest of the menu had the generic pasta dishes you’d see at any suburban Italian-American joint (cannelloni, lasagna, angel hair primavera), but priced slightly higher, thanks to the inner-city rent.
Décor was a trip, reminiscent of a Disneyland Italian grotto, with faux-looking stone and flat-screen TVs airing a slide show of tacky touristy scenes. Louie’s and Fireside can probably rest easy. 2323 N. Henderson Ave. 214-379-3555. $$-$$$