Pizza ---"Best Ever" -- Emma's
Seth said -----
"And the best pizza I've ever had is at Emma's, located in Cambridge."
Seth and fellow chowhounds - for someone from NYC who is into food to claim that an out of the way pizza joint in Cambridge is the best --- certainly deserves a tasting. Emma's is at 370 Huron Ave. 864-8534. By T you go to Harvard Square and take the #72 bus in the tunnel underneath Harvard Square. Ask to be let off at the Cambridge Trust building on Huron Ave. Emma's hours are 11:30 to 8:30. The staff person I spoke with said that they are fascinated with the Internet and will check out Chowhounds. She said that the best time to come is around noon to 1:30 when there are a lot of different slices with various toppings to taste.
The pizza is flowing out the door and has them buried in work- local word is out on Emma's -- but the phone lady was surprised to hear a Dorchester guy asking for directions. It's not a local delivery :- )
Emma's has to be worth a trip. Seth - you sure steered me right with your El Pelon recommendation. I'll get to Emma's before too long. (and back to El Pelon when it's a little warmer outside).
Don't leave Emma's without trying the carmelized onion and sausage pizza. It's a revelation. I ate there again today--had a slice of that as well as an eggplant/cherry tomato/goat cheese--and thought about how their success is that it's funky without being neuveau.
Note: seating is very limited here; only five stools at the counter. In nicer weather you can eat out on the sidewalk, and then run across the street to check out the used book selection at Bryn Mawr Books. While you're in the neighborhood you might as well stop by Formaggio, about a quarter of a mile north on Huron, for some gourmet browsing.
re: Seth Ditchik
>Don't leave Emma's without trying the caramelized onion and sausage pizza
Tord and I visited Emma's on Tuesday and we did not leave without trying the caramelized onion and sausage slice. It was indeed very good. The sweetness of the onions worked very well with the sausage and cheese. We also had a slice of plain cheese..... which I consider as a standard must try in a new place. Emma's uses a good "whole milk" mozzarella and obviously all fresh scratch ingredients as evidenced by the young lady at the counter peeling garlic cloves in-between waiting on customers. Emma's is definitely a cut above most other pizza places in these parts. On a personal note.... I consider the crust to be 75% of what makes a great pizza. For me it has to be full flavored and thick enough to chew with little deposits of cornmeal on the bottom. I am not a fan of the thin cracker style crust that Emma's uses. I would therefor not be able to bestow the title of "best ever". For those who are fans of this style of crust it may well be in the running.
>While you're in the neighborhood you might as well stop by Formaggio, about a quarter of a >mile north on Huron, for some gourmet browsing.
Who could be that close to Formaggio without stopping. Tord went in while I waited for parking. I eventually found a spot and joined Tord inside. Luckily...Ihsan (Boston's cheese guru) was there. He waited on me when I ordered my grilled tuna melt with capers. I asked him what plans he had in regards to the now available "Italian" mortadella. He told me he plans to order the 300 pound sausage complete with it's own table. Ihsan always likes to do things in a big way. BTW the tuna melt came on a nice crusty roll which... to my surprise... was even enhanced by the grilling. It was very delicious.
All in all..... a good day of Chowhounding.
Paul - Thanks for the summary. I had a great time. Folks - Paul has a "FOOD" license plate and we got hit on by a cop out near Fresh Pond who was curious about a red sports car sporting a FOOD plate. (He knew Paul)
Going out with a chowhound is always exciting. Paul and I talked about memories of mozzarella that would string out three feet and taste uniquely "mozzarella".
The crust of the Emma's pizza was crispy and "cracker-like". I actually like a crispy crust but one that combines crispiness with a chewy quality. Emma's was too brittle for me. The toppings list at Emma's is long and interesting - and they seem willing to try just about anything. Perhaps I'll bring a durian next time and try that with anchovies, hot sauce, goat cheese and a double thick crust. The best time for a solo appearance at Emma's is after 1 PM - that way they have a stash of slices up top of the oven and you can try a variety of toppings. Emma's is a narrow place with a counter that seats about 6 or 7 - no booths -with a very friendly staff.
I do not see how Ihsan at Formaggios is going to fit a three hundred-pound mortadella and the special table for it in the confines of that tiny space. They did not have my favorite Swedish Gjetost cheese or the Swedish hardbread wheels I love. That's OK because so few do. What these places on Huron do have are astonishing prices. Sea Bass was $18 lb and Sole went for $24 lb in the seafood place next to Formaggios.
I had a ball with Paul. I hope that other chowhounds get together for good food and good talk about food. It's our thing. The demand side of the consumer's Cosa Nostra.
Paul will probably tell you about our visit to the Super 88 Asian Market on our way up Mass Ave. It's all good.