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Verrazano's Pizza on La Brea

So they opened today. Everyone in there is very nice. It's "New York" without being fake or obnoxious. Place had a great vibe. They serve slices and whole pies, along with sandwiches/salads. I had slices.

Pros: Fresh mozzarella is spread around the pizza for every pie. There's no other New York style place like this in LA (even at Vito's and Joe's you have to pay extra for this option). The toppings I had were great and the pizza itself just LOOKS great.

Cons: The crust is a little too thick throughout the pizza. The sauce is canned, and since they really cake it on, it takes down the flavor a couple notches. There's no sweetness to it. The pizza tasted pretty good when I had a bite with a gob of cheese, but when you get a bite with just sauce it's not right. The balance is off -- thicker crust, heavy sauce, light cheese.

All that said, I will happily give Verrazano's another go (probably with a whole pie; some places have much better pies than slices and vice versa). Today was the grand opening and they're nice people who I'd like to see succeed. Hope today was just opening day jitters and the pizza is better next time.

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  1. Being from Jersey, I completely agree, and I LOVE the fact that they call them PLAIN SLICES. I stopped in and had a slice just to try it and wasn't blown away, but I'm very interested in going back to try something other than the pizza.

    1. Curious: are you blaming the canned sauce on the "opening day jitters"? I'm sure a NYC pizza parlor daring enough to name it after 1 of the bridges thought about the source of the sauce long and hard. That ain't no jitters, that's just cutting corners.

      Garage Pizza still makes their sauce and it's a fantastic one. After reading this, I might not be visiting for dinner as I'd planned...

      3 Replies
      1. re: TonyC

        When you say "makes their sauce", do you mean from fresh tomatoes, come on? What place does not use canned and doctors it up? I am sure they use canned, maybe San Marzanno but canned and then they add their seasoning. Garage is ok, I think fantastic is a stretch.

        1. re: TonyC

          TonyC, I'm going to try Garage, but I have my doubts from what I've seen/read. That's the last of the big places around here I haven't hit.

          1. re: sloanedone

            Garage is ok, nothing special, i got a sausage pepper and onion slice and the crust was criep but the veggies were still very crunchy. I like 2 Guys on Hollywood at Las Palmas, the make a good old school slice and the veggies are never crunchy, they are cooked.

        2. I went back a couple times to give them a real chance. I'm glad that I did, for the most part.

          SAUCE -- There's not many places in this city -- beyond Mozza maybe -- that doesn't use canned tomatoes. The problem the first time was with the mixture. It was too thick and rich. The last two times I've been there I didn't have the same problem. It's still not as sweet as it should be and it doesn't stand up to the best of NYC, but it's not bad like the first time. I still had an issue with the crust being a little too thick, but the toppings were very good, just like the first time.

          Supposedly you can go the shredded mozzarella route. I haven't had it yet but I think that would work much better with their style of pizza. Crust is still a little too thick though, so it tends to get too dark on the bottom. Still, there's some taste to it.

          My big guns for NY style are Vito's, Joe's and Village. Verazzano's isn't up to those standards yet, but I've had 60-odd different slices out here and they're better than a lot of LA pizza. The people there seem like great folks. I'm going to add them to the rotation. Sorry I nailed them on the first round, but I was just being honest.

          1. I'm a little late to the party on this one. Tried a plain pie with fresh mozz and fresh basil from Verrazano's last night. Based upon the comments above, it would seem the pizza's improved a bit. I generally stick with Vito's (or Joe's if I'm in SM), but wanted to give them a shot. I thought the sauce was still lacking something (it was sweet enough but strangely seemed to lack salt), but the slices were a good size, the crust was nice, thin and crispy (not burnt), no wilting tip, with good quality cheese and basil. All in all, a good addition to the neighborhood.

            1 Reply
            1. re: nikky

              I tried a slice last week and I would agree with nikky's description. It's way better than Village Pizzeria IMO (I had it just a few days before so I feel I can compare directly). I found Village so salty and too cheesy. I just wish Verrazano's had a smaller pizza.

            2. if you like ny style my top two favorites out of all spots are Coop on nation and there gambinos on venice. gambinos has killer calzones

              3 Replies
              1. re: skoop323

                I have to say, the Coop severely underwhelmed in my case. Vito's and Joe's is pretty much the beginning and end for me though I'll occasionally do Lamonnica's, Garage, Village, etc.).

                I gave up on Verazanno's a while back (after a half-dozen visits) but I might make give them one more chance based on the above.

                1. re: sloanedone

                  I'd put them on the Deathwatch, unless they are busier then when I went. No real spirit there...

                  1. re: Adsvino

                    I've never seen them busy. Kind of a bad location where there's no traffic and awful signage. That said, if the pizza was killer they would have been fine.