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New Haven pizza in NY?

hyacinthgirl Mar 10, 2009 12:06 PM

Hello, yet another "I'll be visiting" post...
I'm coming to NY with a friend who's not very familar with the east coast. He's heard me rave about Sally's and Pepe's in New Haven. Is there anywhere in the city that has pizza in the same style that compares?

Thanks for your help!

  1. hyacinthgirl Apr 13, 2009 11:32 AM

    Just wanted to thank everyone for responding.
    You were right, nothing like New Haven in NY.
    We did, however, try Di Fara's and Lombardi's. With the sparsely sliced pieces of fresh mozzerella on top, Lombardi's reminded me more of "italian" pizza than NY pizza, if that difference makes sense.
    Di Fara's, in all of it's oily cheesy goodness was much more what I was looking for. Although the 2hr 15 minute wait may have increased my enjoyment, I was just so damn hungry by the time I got a slice. Still, I was impressed. Not as good as New Haven, in my tastebuds' opinions, but still some really great pizza.
    Thanks so much! Can't wait to come back and try more.

    1. Amuse Bouches Mar 12, 2009 10:06 AM

      No. Closest is Lombardi's.

      1. b
        BigGuy Mar 12, 2009 10:05 AM

        Around Times Square, John's Pizza on the south side of 44th near 8th, Don Giovani on 44th near 9th, and Angelo's in the Ed Sullivan theater, all serve coal fired, brick oven pizzas. John's may be the most touristy, but they treat their guests much better than most whole pie pizzerias --not much rudeness at all. Also, John's is in a converted church and the design won all sorts of awards.

        The quality of the pizza at these places is about the same as most of the others that use coal ovens in NYC. While they won't be quite as good as Pepe's, Sally's or Modern on State Street, they are much better than most of the local places selling slices. Is New Haven pizza worth 4+ hours round trip? I don't think so. In midtown, is it worth a half-hour walk and/or a 15 minute wait for a coal fired oven whole pie to be shared, rather than 2 slices each reheated at Family pizza or a Ray's? Yes, and it may cost LESS.

        Also, if eating in any sit down Times Square restaurant, before you are served anything, I highly recommend handing a dollar to your wait person when you're seated, or a five spot if you're with 3 or more people. Add in a tip at the end, too. Non-tipping tourists treat the staff so badly so often that when you do this, you'll be nicely rewarded with very good service.

        1 Reply
        1. re: BigGuy
          p
          Pan Mar 12, 2009 01:23 PM

          Is it somehow a fluke that whenever I've been to John's on 44 St., the pizza has been decidedly mediocre? I'm very surprised seeing all the recommendations for this place on this board.

        2. s
          shivohum Mar 12, 2009 01:46 AM

          San Marzano pizzeria on the lower east side reminded me a lot of Sally's/Pepe's.

          The Vegetarian New Yorker: http://vegny.blogspot.com/

          -----
          San Marzano
          71 Clinton St, New York, NY 10002

          1. Miss Needle Mar 11, 2009 04:36 PM

            Unfortunately there's nothing like Sally's and Pepe's in NYC. I wish there was. DH (who's not a pizza lover) thought the pizza at Pepe's was "really good." When I took him to DiFara's (one of the top in NYC), he just said, "It's all right."

            There is, however, good pizza to be found here. Do a search for it and you'll find loads of contentious threads (well, at least before they were moderated) on what constitutes the best pizza.

            1. Delucacheesemonger Mar 11, 2009 12:14 PM

              Thanks for this post, thought it was just me. \When younger used to drive from Philadelphia to NH for pizza, Sally's, Pepe's, Modern, yes differences but whichever we chose that time it was always the best. Moved to New York for three years and checked the claims re:NY pizza. Tried the top 20 and the bottom 10 or so. Some ok, but none even close to NH. Recently Apizza Scholls in Portland, OR; Pizza Bianco in Phoenix, Tacconellis in Phila are all very good, but still not NH.,
              although Tacconelli's comes damn close.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Delucacheesemonger
                hyacinthgirl Mar 11, 2009 04:54 PM

                I've heard so much about it, I'm honestly thinking of going to Phoenix Just to try Pizza Bianco.
                Well, it will be fun to go on a tasting test of NY pizza anyway.

                1. re: hyacinthgirl
                  s
                  silencespeak Mar 11, 2009 07:26 PM

                  If you go to Bianco, Get 3-4 pies (They're personal sized) because the range in taste that the guy covers is excellent. It's a fantastic pizza joint. It's not my personal favorite pizza place, but it is certainly in the elite. I could easily understand it being someone else's favorite.

              2. d
                designnewhaven Mar 11, 2009 10:47 AM

                I tried every Zagat rated pizzeria in NYC when I lived there for a few years. Unfortunately, none of them come even remotely close to Sally's in New Haven in terms of dough consistency, flavor or overall style.

                That said, there is good pizza to be had in many parts of NYC (though I would strongly recommend avoiding the "popular" or "famous" ones in the Zagat/online guides and just going for a good slice at one of the take out places) - just don't expect anything approaching New Haven pizza.

                20 Replies
                1. re: designnewhaven
                  hyacinthgirl Mar 11, 2009 12:04 PM

                  Alack, alas. Oh well, coming from LA pretty much any pizza we get in NY is going to be a step way up for him anyway.
                  Thank you!

                  1. re: hyacinthgirl
                    Amuse Bouches Mar 12, 2009 10:09 AM

                    Not true. I lived in New Haven for 4 years, NYC for 5 years, and now I live in L.A. While the random pizza you get in NYC may be better overall than the random pizza LA has to offer, LA has several decent pizzerias that eclipse NYC random pizza. NYC may have a few places that are better than LA's best places, but random slice off the street is likely to be pretty bad either way, and if your friend likes pizza he's probably taken some time to seek good pizza in LA.
                    Neither city holds a candle to New Haven. I miss New Haven pizza every day.

                    Of course, there's some terrible pizza in New Haven, too.

                    1. re: Amuse Bouches
                      Pigeage Mar 12, 2009 03:00 PM

                      Hi - What L.A. pizzarias "eclipse" NYC? Where in New Haven have you had "terrible" pizza?

                      1. re: Pigeage
                        Delucacheesemonger Mar 12, 2009 03:05 PM

                        As l mentioned earlier, have had no great pies in NYC or boroughs. Does not mean they are not great, just not great for me, and when moved there in my first 6 months only pie that was pretty good was a clam at Lombardi's. Tried all the names and checked reviews a lot. Guess NYC pizza and me just do not match.
                        Thought P Mozza was a damn good pie,. Have found IMHO it is the crust that matters, the toppings do not matter much. And whatever makes a New Haven pie crust works for me, even the original Figs in Boston had a super crust, haven't been to any of them since they became a zillion places but the original was super.

                        1. re: Delucacheesemonger
                          p
                          Pan Mar 12, 2009 03:28 PM

                          Have you tried the clam pizza at Arturo's? Way better than Lombardi's, in my experience.

                          1. re: Pan
                            Delucacheesemonger Mar 12, 2009 03:30 PM

                            Did try and wasn't for me.Place was friendly and fun, but pie did not do it for me. Maybe bad night.

                          2. re: Delucacheesemonger
                            k
                            kathryn Mar 12, 2009 08:31 PM

                            Pizzeria Mozza's pizza is so big and fluffy, it starts to be more like bread that just happens to have toppings on it. Have you tried Co.? I found the crust there to have a really good texture and flavor, which makes sense, since Lahey is a baker.

                            1. re: kathryn
                              Delucacheesemonger Mar 12, 2009 10:16 PM

                              Thanks, will try next time out. When l had Mozza about a year ago, was not fluffy, was chewy, firm, and well-done, the way l like it.never floppy.

                          3. re: Pigeage
                            Amuse Bouches Mar 12, 2009 03:33 PM

                            Vito's on La Cienega is better than most Famous Ray's, or Sbarros, or Metropolitan Pizza, or pretty much any pizza joint in midtown. So is Rocco's on Wilshire.

                            New Haven -- opinions differ, but I'm no great fan of the pizza at Yorkside (though I love their garlic bread) and Crown pizza was pretty indifferent. There was another mediocre student hangout but the name escapes me.

                            1. re: Amuse Bouches
                              Pigeage Mar 12, 2009 06:34 PM

                              Yorkside and Crown and State (I believe that is the name you were searching for) are all hands down waay better than the New York average - New Haven has a pretty high entry bar and these places have been around a while with fans aplenty - plus there are maybe 5 or so other places with great pizza there that are not commonly mentioned on these foodie boards - so I defend New Haven's reputation - I can't think of a bad slice in that town - besides the national chains.

                              I will leave the L.A. argument to the L.A. board - it has been argued to death and I still say (and I have posted so) that I just don't agree that the L.A. pies are any good. Period. Try ordering a Pizza Margarita.

                              1. re: Pigeage
                                Amuse Bouches Mar 12, 2009 10:00 PM

                                Try ordering a Pizza Margerita at Metropolitan Pizza on West 53rd. All I'm saying is that there's some sucky pizza in NYC too.

                              2. re: Amuse Bouches
                                hyacinthgirl Mar 13, 2009 01:06 PM

                                Rocco's on Wilshire is pretty good, as is Vito's. I'm still hoping for better in NY though...

                                1. re: hyacinthgirl
                                  Amuse Bouches Mar 13, 2009 01:23 PM

                                  Di Fara's if you're willing to trek to Brooklyn, if you're in Manhattan Lombardi's. I've never been impressed with John's.

                                  1. re: Amuse Bouches
                                    Delucacheesemonger Mar 13, 2009 01:32 PM

                                    Were l to trek to Brooklyn would go to Fette Sau, great BBQ.

                                    1. re: Delucacheesemonger
                                      hyacinthgirl Mar 13, 2009 01:47 PM

                                      We'll be spending one night in Brooklyn with a friend actually, so, yes, I'm willing to "trek." : )

                                      1. re: hyacinthgirl
                                        Delucacheesemonger Mar 13, 2009 01:57 PM

                                        IMHO Fette Sau is a far better experience than DiFara's, been to both twice. Pulled pork and brisket are super. Best in NY IMHO again. Have toured every major BBQ area in this country and this measures up. People are young and happy there, good experience. A Zoo on weekends but not bad during the week. l will now say PIZZA so l do not get deleted.

                        2. re: designnewhaven
                          s
                          silencespeak Mar 11, 2009 12:46 PM

                          Profoundly disagree with avoiding the "popular" or "famous" pizzas from Zagat and online guides. Places like Di Fara's, Patsy's in Harlem, Lucali's.. etc. They're wonderful and are big steps up from a corner pizza place.

                          If you want a comprehensive resource on the great pizza shops in NYC, do a search here or click below..

                          http://slice.seriouseats.com/

                          Can't help on New Haven style pizza.

                          1. re: silencespeak
                            p
                            Pan Mar 11, 2009 02:53 PM

                            I also profoundly disagree with the "go to any random pizzeria" mindset. Most pizza in New York sucks.

                            1. re: silencespeak
                              d
                              designnewhaven Mar 11, 2009 07:17 PM

                              Point taken, but it really depends which random corner place you are talking about. I guess you still need to know where to go, but I found many of run of the mill corner pizza places to be superior to most of the "reviewed" pizzerias like Patsy's, Una Pizza Napoletana, or Lombardi's. I used to really like Mario's in Fort Greene. If you make it to New Haven, head directly to Sally's.

                              1. re: designnewhaven
                                s
                                silencespeak Mar 11, 2009 07:25 PM

                                Try Di Fara's if you haven't. I will go to Sally's for a mozz pie sometime in the next few months. I'm curious.

                          2. i
                            irvingk Mar 10, 2009 12:35 PM

                            One word. N. Pepe is by far the best pizza anywhere......Period.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: irvingk
                              h
                              harrison Mar 11, 2009 12:38 PM

                              Another word - Amtrak

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