Whether it’s an allergy or a preference, people are cutting gluten out of their diets, and Denver’s restaurants are taking note. At Cart-Driver, the two-month-old Ballpark eatery known for its fresh oysters and wood-fired pizza, the best-kept secret is the gluten-free crust.
Rather than trying to recreate the texture and taste of traditional pizza dough in a gluten-free form, chef-owner Kelly Whitaker takes a different approach. On request, he slings a casaligna—the Italian term for “grandma’s pizza”—with a crust made from chickpea flour, water, salt, and fresh herbs.
The crust is made daily and cooked to order in a hot cast-iron pan. The result is a pizza that’s crispy on the edges and on the bottom but with a soft, spongy texture in the middle. Light herbaceous flavors of the chickpeas mixed with roasted garlic, oregano, garlic oil, chile flakes, and lemon zest lend themselves to the restaurant’s seasonal toppings from Granata Farms. You can order any of Cart-Driver’s pizzas grandma-style. However, Whitaker and his crew only turn out a limited number of these pies each day.
FYI: Cart-Driver celebrates its grand opening tomorrow, Friday, September 5 (5–10 p.m.) with an expanded menu of signature pizzas. Stop by.
2500 Larimer St., No. 100, 303-292-3553