Photos courtesy Balboa Pizza

Balboa Pizza has been around since 2005 in Henderson and been a hidden gem in a manner of speaking. Located in The District at Green Valley Ranch, which is an upscale mixed-use development next to the Green Valley Ranch Resort, it has been curiously positioned since day one.

Balboa Pizza has two entrances, both with smaller imprints than its adjoining businesses. Upon entering the front door on the District’s welcoming tree-lined main street, guests encounter a curious long hallway before entering the rear of the restaurant. A plus in this direction is you pass by the restrooms, so you know where they’re located.

The back entrance off the parking lot is easier to discover if you look for Pottery Barn, which is next door. This entryway is off a small but inviting outdoor patio with a flat screen TV, and where you find the hostess station.

Balboa’s inviting interior has pale green wood panel wainscoting and ceiling fans creating a casual environment, which is what you might suspect if you take the name as an indication. The influence is the Balboa Peninsula, which is an enchanting neighborhood of the city of Newport Beach in Southern California. The only element missing is the ocean.

The 24-hour establishment caters to families, has a bar with gaming for players, big screen TVs for sports enthusiasts, high top tables next to the bar and small and big booths with hardwood seats for diners.

Most important the food is tasty, filling and fun and the selection is vast with categories: Island Starters, Surf City Salads, Pizza, Young Surfers, Wings, Ribs, Sandwiches and Desserts. You make your food choices from an entertaining newspaper-like menu. 

The individual hand-made thin crust pizzas are with fresh new distinctive toppings as well as traditional choices served on a board. The homemade fresh potato chips are great accompanying a sandwich or wrap or also as a Bucket of Chips selection with a choice of dipping sauces. Buffalo Wings are served mild, spicy or wild, and offer gourmet flavors such as Mango Habanero, Jamaican Jerk, Thai Peanut, etc. The selection of salads is enticing on the healthier side. 

In the cocktail department, along with ample beer and wine selections, there are specialty drinks with catchy names like Perks of the Job, Tito’s Moscow Mule and theme orientations such as Grass Skirt, Beachcomber, Banana Hammock and Balborita (margarita).

Balboa Pizza has a lot to offer including individuality of not being a chain restaurant, comfort, affordability and enticing food selections. You can call for take-out orders and ask about happy hour 4 to 7 p.m. from your server.