Di Fara - Saturday afternoon lines?
After reading many posts about the best pizza in the city, I've concluded I must eat at Di Fara's. But I've also read much about the chaotic lines (or lack thereof) and a potentially long, long wait for a pie. My schedule does not allow for a weekday visit. I’d like to go on Saturday, sometime after 12:00 noon and before 3:00. Let me admit to being somewhat impatient and definitely unwilling to kill time outdoors when it’s 35 degrees. Should I wait until warm spring weather for a Saturday lunch? Or can I get a pie within say 40 minutes of arrival in that 12:00 – 3:00 time frame?
If the consensus is I should expect a long line and postpone until the spring, what should I do for plan “B”?
Totonno (Coney Island location)?
Bring a book and a bottle of wine, and enjoy the wait. Honestly, its fascinating to watch Dom work. He gets into an almost zen-like state.
Plus the pies are unbeatable.
Make sure to stand at the counter the whole time. It cuts your wait in half. In fact, it could do more than that if you happen to be one of the random city-ites or tourists who come in and sit down for an hour thinking that they can leap up and go "Oh no, it's my turn!" when you're halfway through the sentences "Hey Dom, lemme get a regular pie. How are you doin'?"
Glue yourself to the counter, even if you're reading while you do it.Also inch your way to the right and try to get somewhere around where the counter bends or a bit to the right of it so you're pretty much face to face with Dom when he cuts a pie. This makes getting an order in clearly much easier and it allows you to remind him if your pie is taking ages.
I whole-heartedly agree with JFores: I've started using the exact same tricks he mentioned, and they work great. Although I haven' t been nearly as many times as many other chowhounders, Dom's priority list seems to go (from first-served to last): irritating complainers--> (sorry to be un-PC but this next one is definitely true) pretty/nice women-->people standing at the counter close to the ovens-->people standing at the counter close to the door-->people standing elsewhere (coolers, no-man's-land, etc.)-->people sitting down.
Also, as long as you get inside, you'll be fine for your wait: If you don't think watching Dom work is interesting/engaging/worth-while... Well, then I feel bad for you. As mentioned earlier, your best bet is going at off-hours (11am, or if not then, btween 3 and 5pm).
Good luck! I'm jealous that you're going to get to have a Di Fara's slice for the first time tomorrow.
The irritating complainers one is give and take. It's very random. I've seen irritating complainers get ignored for a very long time, but a woman also came in once and after waiting about 10 minutes said angrily "That one's mine, right!?!?" and Dom basically did a "Oooh... uh ...yeah.." Me = Not a happy camper.
Oh well, I've done some vicious line cuts at Di Fara that I might be damned to hell for so maybe I deserve it (JFores strolls in, JFores circumvents an hilarious line thats going out the door despite the rest of the place and the whole counter being empty, JFores orders, JFores has a pie before the guy who was at the front of that line when he walked in. Yes, I'm going to hell.)
You REALLY have to get to the oven side of the counter or you're in a bad spot. Fight for territory.
Yes, I'm considering writing something comparable to The Art of War or The Prince for Di Fara line practices.
as a die-hard DiFara's fanatic, I would encourage you to wait it out. There is little logic to the crowd, it has a mind of its own. Dom does not care, he will make pizza for 2 or 25. My only suggestion is that you could try (somehow) to go when his lovely daughter is working. She, at least, takes orders and keeps track of who was there first. Again, Dom will not help in this regard. Just try to stay in his line of vision.
If he no see you, you no eat.
I personally recommend the square pie with hot peppers and porcini mushrooms. But that's just me.