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Upper Crust not for me


Tried UP in south end last week first time was going to try at CClocation in brookline but at opening time it looked dirty liked no one cared that windows and front door were covered in greese and flour but gave south end a chance half heated up slice with not that wow that people talk about. they just opened in west rox good luck but i will walk on over to pleasent cafe for ice cold beer a well put together pie for 12 bucks

  1. Once was enough at the UC in Lexington - I had a slice each of regular and whole wheat a couple of years ago. Both crusts were exceedingly overbaked. The side salad was skimpy and not good. But I do wish that more pizzerias offered a whole wheat option. Not only do I prefer the taste, but it's much better for anyone who is trying to avoid foods that cause spikes in blood sugar. I would gladly pay a couple of bucks more for a whole wheat crust pizza and think it would bring more business into places that advertised it.

    1 Reply
    1. re: greygarious

      I'm with you on the WW crust, greygarious! Mangia is Brookline offers it........excellent!

    2. You won't find too many fans of upper crust around here; I don't hate them but I'm rarely in the mood for their pies. The grease and the flour in the window are probably supposed to make them look more "authentic." The crusts tend to be very thin, charred and brittle. The pizza rarely survives delivery. Their topics tend towards "precious" i.e. artichoke and sun-dried tomato.

      But sometimes I don't want a thick, hot slice of cheese pizza - I want a crispy flatbread with artichoke and sun-dried tomato. In those rare circumstances, Upper Crust is pretty good. They do their thing well; it just so happens that they incorrectly advertise it as "pizza."

      2 Replies
      1. re: the modern serf

        I'm thinking that pretty much no thin-crust pie survives delivery well, and few thicker-crusted ones do, either. Something about steam inside the box, I suspect. (Greek-style pan pizzas suffer less, but I rarely want one of those anyway.)

        That said, I've gotten delivery pies from both Mangia and Upper Crust in the South End, and Mangia's tend to arrive hotter. I prefer their crust and sauce (and the fact that they're a smaller chain that does less advertising) anyway.


        1. re: MC Slim JB

          On the few occassions when I order a pizza to be delivered, I always ask them to undercook it a bit and not to slice it. When I get it, I slide it in a preheated hot oven for a few minutes(375-400) and it really does taste good.

      2. I gave up on the UC in Salem (MA) for a very inconsistent and expensive slice. All they did was allow the other slice purveyors to raise their lunch combos accordingly, dough inflation notwithstanding. Salem STILL needs a great slice but I can live with Firehouse pizza until then. There is still room for a really good thin crust pizzeria on the NS - Bertucci's in Beverly is all we got.

        1. I only have Upper Crust when I am going to the Coolidge Corner Cinema and I'm running late. I think it is some of the worst pizza around. I am baflled at how much praise this place gets. The pizza is dryyyyyyy.

          1. i like upper crust, the ones i go to are in harvard square and coolidge corner. the people who work there range from indifferent to surly to extremely irritating, but i like the slices. the whole wheat crust, on the one occasion i had it, was terrible. some of their topping combinations are a bit confusing. but all in all i think they're a better than average take out slice. but the regular crust is great, and they don't overload it with sauce or grease.

            i've never had a problem with dry or overbaked crusts, nor have i noticed it being particularly expensive. but when i'm paying in the realm of $2-3 for lunch, i don't really care either.

            1. I always want to like UP. I've had delivery from the West Roxbury one twice and both times it wasn't very good. I can deal with not-so-great pizza, if it didn't cost so much. We live super close to the WR shop and the pizza has been kind of cold once and lukewarm once. The cold one seriously seemed like maybe it was someone else's pizza that had been sitting around and they brought it to us.
              We went with Check Mate Cafe in Rosi the next time and it was way better and cheaper.

              1. People say "Wow" about Upper Crust? And not at the start of the phrase "Wow, that was disappointing"?

                1. Only been there once...but I too expected better. The slices were dry and disappointing.

                  Upper Crust
                  41 Waltham St, Lexington, MA 02421

                  1. Do *NOT* get reheated slices at upper crust. Your jaw will ache for hours :-P

                    The crust they have is only decent when eating a pie freshly cooked from the oven. Even then, it's harder than I like, though fairly crunchy. Makes it ok for me, but my SO likes it.
                    Whatever they do to their crust to make it crunchy makes it horribly hard and chewy when reheated...

                    1. I'm amazed that so many people dislike Upper Crust. I actually find it to be in my top 3 pizzas in Boston (w/ Regina & Gran Gusto). It has its own peculiar style, which--in the pantheon of pizza styles--I would describe as a poor man's Pepe's (e.g. Frank Pepe in New Haven) with oversized tomato chunks.

                      I find their crust to be the most compelling aspect of the pizza, with a substantial chewiness, good flavor and reasonable char. The only real disappointment is the cornicione (outer crust), which tends to be dried out and brittle. Still, it's leagues better than, say, Emmas, where the whole damn thing is dry and brittle as a cracker without even achieving any char or flavor!

                      1. Agree agree agree. UC is overpriced for the mediocre quality they produce. We have started trucking to Flatbread out Rte 3 in Bedford for our suburban gourmet pizza fix. Much better, friendlier and similarly priced.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Slim Strummer

                          Depending on where you are coming frmo, Slim Strummer, you might want to try Kendra & Anthony's Hand-crafted Pizza on rt. 38 in Wilmington, in the same strip as the Staples store (across from Wilmington Plaza). I was only there once, a year ago, for a takeout "Johnny from Medford" (cheese pizza with sausage, ricotta, and caramelized onions that really were cooked properly) that was very good indeed. But $13 for a 12-inch pizza is a little too steep to be my go-to pizzeria. As I recall, the crust is thinner than, say, Sal's Just Pizza, but not as thin as Flatbread or UC. They advertise that they will also put together "take-and-bake" to-go orders. www.kendraandanthonys.com

                        2. Not for me either. Their pies have an unpleasant sweetness. I'll stick with Mangia or my own for now.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: quirkydeb

                            not the best but .. better than Any of those (your town) house of pizza places
                            and of course frozen

                            1. re: foodperv

                              I don't know about that. If you're not a thin crust pizza person, UC is just not what you're looking for. I think a lot of those "your town" house of pizza places are pretty good. The only frozen I've found worth eating is Dr. Oetker. Funny name for a pizza, but it isn't bad.

                          2. Whole pies from UC seem better than slices.

                            Had a slice the other day on Newbury St and it was meh ...

                            BTW, Paul Newman's frozen cheese pizza is edible.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: C. Hamster

                              I had Upper Crust for the first time last night, from their Comm Ave store, and i was totall;y underwhelmed. Unlike many of the above posters experience of over-baked crusts, mine was limp and pale and the toppings (eggplant and ricotta) were incredibly skimpy. What was worse, however, was that the Caesar salad came with a packet of Ken's dressing and croutons that obviously came out of a box.

                            2. Im from New York and I thought this place was good if your looking for a thin crust pizza. Although it is a chain in Boston, they are all not equivalent. The one on Newburry Street is delicious. I ordered delivery from the one on Charles Street the other day and the cheese on the 5 "pies" (yes pies) was really enough for only one. MORE CHEESE PLEASE. And I do not recommend delivery from the Upper Crust at any of the location since their pizza's GET COLD FAST. Its worth a try but nothing to seriously rave about.

                              3 Replies
                              1. re: cheecherz

                                I agree - Upper Crust reminds me of "average" slices you get most places in NY, so as a NYer, I tend to like it. I don't find the crust tough or dry at all. It's perfectly foldable, too. I think the cheese to crust ratio was good - complete coverage, but not so much that it gets soggy or greasy. Wouldn't go out of my way to hit it, but not bad.

                                1. re: cheecherz

                                  We started ordering our pizzas with extra cheese. (And I generally tried to pick it up fresh, not delivered.) Though, now that we live near Stella's in Watertown, we don't bother with UC anymore.

                                  I've said many times, when done right, I think UC pizza is great, but they have been growing the chain too fast, and therefore they have major consistency problems in terms of both food-quality control and people management.

                                  P.S. Not sure why you emphasized "pies". Yes, it's a pizza pie. So...?

                                  1. re: cheecherz

                                    I agree. When it's good, it reminds me of the New Haven pizza I love and that is a good NYC version.

                                    I actually did the 3 pizzas and get a 5 lb whoopie pie promotion for the Super Bowl. I'm not a fan of Wicked Whoopie pies because the filling is artificial tasting, but the pizza ranged from OK (buffalo chicken) to absolutely superb (the Harvard Street, which is garlic & tomato).

                                  2. I tried to go to the one in Harvard Square while I was Christmas shopping last year and the kid behind the counter wouldn't even look up from whatever he was doing to acknowledge that I was standing right in front of him. I stood there for a few minutes and then went to Pinocchio's.

                                    2 Replies
                                    1. re: scratchie

                                      yeah I have found their staff (especially at the Brookline and Watertown locations) to be lackadaisical at best and often downright rude.

                                      1. re: Gordough

                                        am a pizza lover and upper crust is just not for me.
                                        in the brookline area, i prefer Presto's or Pino's.
                                        Upper Crust, besides opening a new store daily, is simply not that good.

                                    2. I actually would go so far as to say I dislike them - I find them devoid of flavor in either toppings or crust, and I was not wowed by the texture either. Granted, I did not get a whole pie, just single slices. It reminded me of Sweet Tomatoes, which I initially thought was interesting with the whole blobs of tomato. I have now realized that both are just boring, and probably healthy.