I vividly remember the first time I had seafood on a pizza. I was on vacation in Cozumel, Mexico years ago. Friends staying at the same hotel I was had raved about the seafood pizza at a local restaurant, and I was both intrigued and a bit put off by the idea – but as always, willing to try something new. The restaurant was named Such is Life. One bite and I was an instant convert. The fact that we were sitting in a walled garden courtyard bedecked with flowering vines didn’t hurt. The night was soft and smooth, and the oceanic flavors mixed with the oceanic air of Cozumel…heaven on earth.
And this was a white pizza, the first time I’d ever had one without tomatoes. I think it had shrimp and clams on it, and when I went home to Colorado I immediately started experimenting in the kitchen.
Over time I arrived at a seafood pizza recipe of my own, using some combination (depending on availability) of shrimp, clams, scallops, squid, and it became a staple of my entertaining repertoire.
Now seafood pizza and white pizza are more common, and I recently enjoyed the clam pizza pictured here at Enzo’s in Lawrenceville the other night. It is a much simpler affair than the maybe too heavily laden version I used to make, which required a thicker crust to hold up to the toppings.
I often wonder what happened to Such is Life restaurant. A little online research (cheaper than airfare) reveals the endearing story of how it was started. And further online research reveals that the owner moved back to the states at some point and had restaurants in Arizona. But then it appears he, and his now-grown son, moved back to Cozumel and opened up there again around 2001, offering, I read, good shrimp tacos (as did Big Fish Seafood Bistro earlier this summer, see second photo). Which reminds me of how much I like fish tacos, but that’s for another day!