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Another Pepe's Apizza Coming

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Scargoe Jul 31, 2008 03:20 PM

Channel 8 News in New Haven just had a story that The famed Pepe's Apizza of Wooster St. is going to open yet another branch....this time in the Mohegan Sun Casino. Slated to open in 2010 according to the story. That makes four, enough to call them a chain?
Supposedly, there is a family member running each of the restaurants. I think the manager being groomed for this one is Tonto Pepe.

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  1. t
    Td61 RE: Scargoe Jul 31, 2008 04:28 PM

    HOORAY!

    3 Replies
    1. re: Td61
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      askeenan RE: Td61 Jul 31, 2008 05:15 PM

      A new pepes coupon came out today in Clipper magazine front page ($5 off any large pizza) I hope they are not taking a front page ad out b/c of lack of business in Manchester! I will definately be using my coupon.

      1. re: askeenan
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        germay RE: askeenan Aug 1, 2008 06:10 AM

        Missed the coupon! My wife and I are spending the day in New Haven next Thursday to see the Van Goghs at Yale then over to Ikea and Pepe's. It will be our first visit to Pepe's. I have a week to decide what I will order.

        1. re: germay
          EastRocker RE: germay Aug 1, 2008 10:58 AM

          white clam.

    2. Jimmy Cantiello RE: Scargoe Aug 1, 2008 06:50 AM

      And Yonkers N.Y. is slated to be #5, not counting The Spot on Wooster Street. I think Pepe's is going the way of Pizzeria Uno. Sigh.

      4 Replies
      1. re: Jimmy Cantiello
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        germay RE: Jimmy Cantiello Aug 1, 2008 07:57 AM

        It'll be a while, though. From their website:

        "There are more than 200 Uno Chicago Grill restaurants found in 31 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, South Korea and the United Arab Emirates.?

        1. re: Jimmy Cantiello
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          chefcman RE: Jimmy Cantiello Aug 14, 2008 12:58 AM

          yonkers? where and when

          how did you hear of this?

          1. re: chefcman
            Jimmy Cantiello RE: chefcman Aug 14, 2008 03:04 AM

            It was mentioned in the article about the Mohegan Sun opening in the New Haven Register.

            http://www.nhregister.com/site/news.c...

            1. re: Jimmy Cantiello
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              kimfair1 RE: Jimmy Cantiello May 29, 2009 05:44 AM

              The Yonkers outlet was also mentioned on the box we took our leftovers home from at the Wooster St restaurant.

        2. f
          FoodieJim RE: Scargoe Aug 1, 2008 09:22 AM

          I'm not overly concerned about the expansion. (Although the foot traffic at MS may be too much for a place like Pepe's to handle and still focus on quality). As long as their branches remain in relative (no pun intended) close proximity with one another, and with their ingredient suppliers, there shouldn't be a problem. I won't be ordering a white clam pie from a Pepe's in Kansas City. But getting fresh clams and Italian sausage to Uncasville should be no more difficult than getting them to New Haven, Fairfield or Manchester.

          5 Replies
          1. re: FoodieJim
            Jimmy Cantiello RE: FoodieJim Aug 1, 2008 09:35 AM

            Yeah, but then you have to bake the pie.........................the right way.

            The one time I visited the Fairfield branch the pie was undercooked. You have to have consistency or the product will be authentic in name only.

            1. re: Jimmy Cantiello
              EastRocker RE: Jimmy Cantiello Aug 1, 2008 11:04 AM

              I have not been to the fake, i mean new, locations. Do they have coal ovens? I thought that you couldn't build new coal ovens, you could only be grandfathered in.

              1. re: EastRocker
                Jimmy Cantiello RE: EastRocker Aug 1, 2008 11:23 AM

                Very good question. I know for a fact that they have almost an exact replica of the New Haven oven. However, I'm not sure if it's coal fired. All I know is when I complained to our Fairfield branch waiter about the white clam being undercooked I made a point of checking the oven temperature on the way out. The temperature gauge read 600 degrees. If I'm remembering correctly, I never saw the oven in New Haven reading less than 800 degrees.

                1. re: EastRocker
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                  Jestner RE: EastRocker Aug 1, 2008 12:47 PM

                  I thought the whole coal prohibition was a NYC thing...but I'm not sure.

                  Pepe's is a profit center, not a pizza parlour.

                  How many companies over the years have sold their good names for the sake of profits - across all industry spectrums. This is a story about cashing out the brand name for more revenues and profits. Now, if they can somehow vanquish the demons that lurk in their various locations (including sadly New Haven) and achieve consistancy and an ablity to make pies how they used to - then I'll gladly praise the place. But in my observations, the consistency and quality of Pepe's is shaky at best.

                  So lets all clap our hands because now we can get our crass commodity called Pepes Pizza at Mohegan Sun

                  1. re: Jestner
                    j
                    JayCT RE: Jestner Aug 1, 2008 01:16 PM

                    I don't agree. I have been going to Pepes in New Haven for years and have found the new places to be just as good. I have gotten poor quality pizzas in New Haven even going back 30 years ago. I think people tend to think of Pepe's Pizza as a shrine that can never be replicated. It is a business and its pizza can be replicated and is being replicated just fine. JMHO Jay

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              02sbxstr RE: Scargoe Aug 1, 2008 03:34 PM

              We've been many times to Pepe's in NH and maybe 5 times to Pepe's in Manchester and fail to see any material difference between the two. In both cases, great coal-fored pven pizza - I've watch them fire the coal in both locations. As to the chain condemnation, its a red herring: McDonalds didn't become a multibillion $ operation by failing to produce consistency and a level of quality from site to site. Nor did Ruth's Chris or Mortons. As long as management pays attention to the product, I don't care if there are 2 or 20 Pepe's.

              2 Replies
              1. re: 02sbxstr
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                FoodieJim RE: 02sbxstr Aug 2, 2008 12:55 PM

                Agree. Just got back from the Manchester location. White Clam and a Sausage and Onion. Both were indistinguishable from NH locale. To the poster a few posts above, yes, they use the same coal-fired oven. The ovens at the satellites are "brick by brick" replicas. For the doubting Thomases, if you use the same ingredients, bake in the same temperature oven for the same length of time, there is no reason why the finished product will be any different, Of course, the NH oven probably has years and years of schmutz on the bottom bricks which no doubt impart some character to the pies there. But other than that, I can't tell the diff. Manchester was full today with a line out the door from noon to 1:15, so they are doing OK. At least on Saturdays.

                1. re: FoodieJim
                  Jimmy Cantiello RE: FoodieJim Aug 2, 2008 06:48 PM

                  FoodieJim said:

                  "The ovens at the satellites are "brick by brick" replicas. For the doubting Thomases, if you use the same ingredients, bake in the same temperature oven for the same length of time, there is no reason why the finished product will be any different."

                  I agree but that was my point in the first place. I think there's a possibility that the newer Pepe's branches may not be doing what has to be done to turn out a signature Pepe's pie. Perhaps the other locations are not, in fact, using the same ingredients and baking in the same temperature oven for the same length of time. It may be a matter of spreading one's self too thin, as it were. I've only had one experience at the Fairfield location and I noted that the oven was baking at 600 degrees which is approximately 200 degrees cooler than the original New Haven location. Of course that was only one example, but future visits to the different sites will allow one to make a more informed decision. I can only give my impressions of the products that were put before me. Your mileage may vary.

              2. The Chowhound Team RE: Scargoe Aug 2, 2008 10:17 PM

                Folks,

                We removed some generic "chains dilute quality" discussion that could apply to any restaurant anywhere in the world. If you'd like to have that discussion, you're welcome to do so on our Not About Food board.

                Please keep this discussion focused on the food at the various Pepe's locations: if one is different from another, how so? Thanks for keeping us on track.

                1. j
                  jakeyd RE: Scargoe Aug 5, 2008 10:18 AM

                  I've eaten at the Fairfield location more than 20 times in the past year, 4-5 times in NH, They've both been inconsistent, sometimes pies are perfect, sometimes undercooked crusts at both spots. Stick to small pies and you're much more likely to get a great pie. YMMV

                  1. r
                    ratbuddy RE: Scargoe Aug 14, 2008 11:58 AM

                    Bleh. I've never tried the New Haven branch, but had a nasty pie from Manchester. The cheese on top was overcooked, and the crust was both too salty and undercooked. Light years behind Harry's (either location) and not even as good as the room service pizza at Mohegan Sun's hotel. I'll give it one more chance once they open at Mohegan, and hopefully it was an off night, but if it's the same, back to room service I go.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: ratbuddy
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                      Slubgob RE: ratbuddy Aug 15, 2008 12:30 PM

                      Been to the NH branch a number of times over the years, and it's been consistantly good. Nice thin crust, cooked just to the point of a little char on the edge as it should be.

                      Been to Manchester twice now. First time got my standard of onion and bacon -- the crust was just about cooked and on the thickish side, the bacon was still raw. Second time tried to convince my dad to order it "well done," he compromised with "medium." Same result.

                      As far as I'm concerned, I agree with Ratbuddy -- I'll take Harry's over Manchester Peppe's any day. Of course, if you really want to get down to it, I'll take Sally's over Peppe's New Haven too, but that's kind of splitting hairs and opening up a whole 'nother "religious" debate ;-)

                    2. b
                      boomerboomer RE: Scargoe Aug 16, 2008 12:16 PM

                      I hit the New Haven Pepe's (either the Spot or the main restaurant) and love it. I tried Manchester one day and found it was identical. I was happily surprised.

                      I imagine the orginal will always be the best (probably due to the "seasoning of the oven" over so many years) just like Regina's in Boston. Regina's branches have very good pizza but again, it just isn't the same as the original.

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: wgf911
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                        mrporkbelly RE: wgf911 May 28, 2009 08:50 PM

                        I had a pie at the Fairfield place the other day with some friends visiting from colorado. they loved it! The crust was perfect, remember to to keep the toppings to 2. to many toppings soggs out the pie.
                        pizza is all about the dough/crust and Pepi's rocks!

                        1. re: mrporkbelly
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                          JayCT RE: mrporkbelly May 29, 2009 08:17 AM

                          Just saw on the news that they fired up the ovens at the new Pepe's at Mohegan Sun. The news said that they need to fire up the ovens for several weeks before the place will open to "season" them. They also said the new branch will open in July so keep an eye open for it. Jay

                          1. re: JayCT
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                            ratbuddy RE: JayCT May 29, 2009 01:25 PM

                            Saw the space where they're building it when we went down a week ago. Apparently Bobby's Burger Palace is going to be right next door, a one stop shop for below average pizza and mediocre burgers.

                            1. re: JayCT
                              t
                              TastyNewEngland RE: JayCT May 30, 2009 07:59 AM

                              Exciting, can't wait to go.

                              I've been to the original and Manchester several times (I'm a fiend, I'll admit it) and the biggest difference to me is the pies are just a lot more measured and carefully put together in Manchester. In New Haven I think they run just a little more fast and loose with the ingredients which to me makes for a more sloppy/primal/better pizza. But it's still the bomb in either location, of course.

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