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Sinister eyes on the sizzling pies

Lucifers Pizza features a number of ungodly combinations, but some like it hot, and this is their lair.

December 22, 2008|Jessica Gelt

Something wicked this way comes. Fortunately, the rough beast slouching toward Los Feliz doesn't signal the end of times. It's just Lucifers Pizza, a devilish spicy-pizza restaurant opened by a 27-year-old Kiwi named Adam Borich.

Located on Hillhurst's Drakkar Noir-scented restaurant row, Lucifers cops the kind of Dark Lord-in-a-smoking-jacket vibe that many Santa Monica-based Goth clubs only dream about.

The space is small, with pitch-black walls and a long tongue of clotted-blood-colored carpet leading from the door to the counter. A wrought-iron chandelier flecked with electric candles glitters on high, illuminating a glowing-red soda fridge, a smattering of small black tables and a sprawling maroon-cushioned window seat.

A sheet of chain mail, hanging behind the counter, offers a glimpse of a kitchen lighted by a hellish fluorescent glare. There, Beelzelbub's servants labor, kneading dough, spreading sauce, applying toppings and measuring out chili flakes.

This last bit of work is what separates Lucifers from other, mild-mannered pizza joints. Borich, 27, has an unnatural obsession with spice.

When you order a pizza at Lucifers, you have the option of making it "zero," "medium," "fiery" or "blazing." The last option consists of the restaurant's signature "ringburner" hot sauce and whole red chili peppers.

"Ringburner" is also the name of a pizza topped with pepperoni, black pepper, bell peppers and hot chili sauce. The ring-burning reference will leave you with uneasy suspicions about the inspiration for the Johnny Cash tune.

"I go to Thai restaurants and ask them to make it as hot as they can make it," says Borich. "Sometimes the chefs come out to watch me eat it." Does he suffer afterward? He's working out his feelings about that through Lucifers.

On the menu you'll find 18 "Damned Good Pizza" combinations, including the unholy (smoked salmon, cream cheese, capers and arugula), the bestselling (Greek lamb and rosemary) and the tummy-teasing (Thai satay chicken with noodles and peanut sauce). Also in line with the restaurant's diabolical mandate to torment its customers with hellish puns is a list of "Seven Deadly Sides," including hot wings, a Caesar salad and garlic calzone sticks.

The only question remaining: What would Satan order?

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Lucifers Pizza

Where: 1958 Hillhurst Ave., L.A.

When: 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily. Delivery available.

Price: Pizzas, $6.50 to $18; sides, $4.50 to $6.50.

Contact: (323) 906-8603, www.luciferspizza.com.

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