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Apr 10, 2012 07:53 PM

I think I give up on Pizza in Westchester

Growing up in Brooklyn, I remember great pizza. Even when we moved to Westchester in 1985, there were some class spots. Sal's in Mamaroneck, S&J in Scarsdale and the place up by WCC in Valhalla were all great, but even the average places were good. Then it all went downhill.

I tried a slice from Villa Maria in Larchmont today. One caramelized onion slice and Snapple. It looked good and I was told it also had gorgonzola in it. I was psyched. I go to pay and it was $6.20 for a slice that took about eight bites to finish. There was no gorgonzola and aside from the sweetness of the onions, it was absolutely flavorless. I don't eat pizza out often, because it is so bad across the board, but any thoughts? And don't tell me Pepe's. I'm saddened that frozen supermarket pizza usually exceeds in flavor and is generally a lot cheaper.

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  1. j - have you given Catania's in Yonkers on Central Ave. a try? Been a fan of the pizza and the mini calzones since the early 80s. Not on par with Brooklyn pizza by any stretch, but I've always enjoyed it.

    9 Replies
    1. re: Sra. Swanky

      Will definitely give it a go. Where on Central?

      1. re: jhopp217

        It's in the Tanglewood Shopping Center. If you're heading north on Central, it's on your right, just before Nathan's.

        1. re: Sra. Swanky

          We had a pie from there yesterday (extra large regular pie) after reading this thread. I am a Brooklyn transplant as well and was pretty satisfied. The crust could have been a little thinner and crisper, but the ratios and flavors were fine. Usually we get their mini veal and pepper calzones which are more akin to turnovers than the calzones I ate as a kid, but they are no less irresistible.

          1. re: foodiemom10583

            Love Catania's, especially their Everything Pie (with anchovies). Their mini calzones are wonderful, too.

            1. re: slowsmoked

              Even the Italian half of my family in Brooklyn asks us to bring those minis to parties. I happily oblige and hope they don't notice if a couple are missing.

            2. re: foodiemom10583

              I gave up on Catania's a year ago. I found that they in no way compared to how they were in t he 80's-90's. both slices, and the mini calzones, which used to be excellent.

              1. re: JMF

                We usually get a custom order of the hors d'oeuvre-sized ones and they are great. We've been going for 14 years. To each their own.

                1. re: foodiemom10583

                  Definitly agree to disagree. I stopped by today. got a ground veal and pepper mini calzone and a ground meatball one, and a regular slice. the filling on the veal calzone was pretty good. but everything else was awful. their dough is leaden and oily. the slice was so greasy, with oil dripping off, and a metallic off flavor to the cheese/sauce. i only finished the filling of the veal, and threw the rest out. That's my last try of catania's, i'll stick to Gino's.

                  1. re: JMF

                    I'm sorry you had a bad experience. Everything we get from them is a custom order for us rather than picked from the counter and we really don't have much to complain about. Maybe I should place an order for you using my sexy phone voice. ;)

      2. Not your typical pizzeria pizza, but I really enjoyed the margharita pie at Burrata. They have an awesome lunch special -- A nice sized personal pizza and an appetizer for $10. Plus you're sitting in a nice environment. The best old time pizza I've had recently though was at a pizzeria near my son's school in the Bronx. It's on Broadway, just under the El of the last stop on the subway near 246th Street, and it blew me away. It was the pizza of my childhood. It's completely out of the way, but if you've got a real hankering going, take the HHP to the Broadway exit, and travel north on Broadway, past the Burger King, on the same side of the street, under the EL on your right. I have no idea what it's called, but it was great.

        13 Replies
        1. re: roxlet

          Broadway Joe's Pizza Inc
          5983 Broadway, Bronx NY 10471
          (718) 796-0376

          1. re: roxlet

            Roxlet. I believe we live near each other. I am seconds from Burrata and have been meaning to try it. Was told "small and pricey," but if it's good I'll pay. I'm not a fan of Polpettina, which I can throw a ball from my apartment. Twice had their pizza (four different slices) - all average or below.

            As for the one you talked about. Broadway Pizza in Riverdale is the one I believe you are talking about. Hands down, the last old style pizza around here. Probably one of the best slices in NY. When I went to Manhattan College, I went there often. Great and not expensive.

            1. re: jhopp217

              Yup, that's the one. Broadway Pizza, a real old-time slice. My son goes to HM, and that (or sometimes Wings On The Run) is his usual Tuesday lunch with the guys. One day, I was dropping him off around lunch time, and he wanted to get a slice. I asked him to get me one too, and , oh boy, was it a trip down pizza memory lane.

              Of course, Burrata is a horse of a different color, but I thought it was a nice color, and for a $10 lunch, very nice indeed. I, too, was not a fan of Polpettina the one time I got lunch from there. I thought the pizza was flavorless and the salad was underdressed. I haven't been back since.

              I'm in Bronxville, so not so far from you in Eastchester. Have you been to the Lincoln Lounge in Mt. Vernon. A neighbor of mine speaks very favorably about it. She's Italian too, so I somewhat trust her opinion on the matter. She exclusively orders take out pizza from Fleetwood Joe's, which I think is fine, but not special. We have ordered from Angelina's in Tuckahoe since it is near the squash club, and I have found that their freshly made, hot and un-reheated cheese pies are pretty good. My son is a big fan of A Mangiare's Sicilian pizza, something I rarely order.

              1. re: roxlet

                Lincoln Lounge is the best pizza in westchester bar none. It blows Johnny's away. Sure, it's not a romantic spot or even that pleasant of a spot, but the food is good, pizza exceptional and the service is A+, even when crowded.

                Fleetwood Joe's actually has decent pizza, but even better food. I don't like red sauce italian, but they do have some really good stuff. Used to order there when I dated a girl in the neighborhood.

                A'Mangiare is good, but sadly, the best one, the one in WP is closed. The one in Bronxville is decent, but I prefer Gino's to them. I'm not a fan of Sicilian other than a little place in Queens called Rose and Joe's. it's a bakery that just happens to have the best Sicilian I've ever had.

                1. re: jhopp217

                  We went to the Lincoln Lounge for dinner after my son's basketball game. It's a wonderful trip back in time. The food is outstanding. Excellent pizza. Very good veal, and I enjoyed the lasagna. What made the evening evening more enjoyable was the kind and attentive staff. I definitely will be going back.

                  1. re: jwg

                    I confess to being not much of a fan of pizza. Them's fighting words around here, where it seems every other storefront is a pizza joint. But an individual, thin-crust pizza at Lincoln Lounge is what I order every time we go and they have a large menu. I like anchovies and mushrooms on top. The pointed end of the slice can get a little soggy, if you linger too long, but it's still a very fine slice. It's definitely a homey kind of place, where children are welcome and enjoyed.. I know families who've gone there for generations.

                    1. re: Pat Hammond

                      I'm curious to try Lincoln Lounge now. Just wondering, if we go on a Saturday or Sunday evening, with my 2 young(ish) kids, is it the kind of place where we need to get there at like 5:00 or there is a wait? Or does it not get that crowded?

                      1. re: valerie

                        I went on a weekend and there was no wait, but I will admit, there was about a foot of snow on the ground last time I went. Miss the place.

                        1. re: valerie

                          Hard to say. If we can't make an early dinner, we'll call for reservations. It seems to be the kind of place where the "old guard" will show up en masse, so reservations have always worked for us. I was surprised to find out that they're open on Monday, but closed on Sunday. Oh, and parking can be a challenge. Just keep circling around, if you don't get lucky.

                          1. re: Pat Hammond

                            Thanks...did not know that they take reservations. Definitely a plus.

                          1. re: wincountrygirl

                            Solano's Lincoln Lounge is located in Mt Vernon, NY
                            I have found the food to be hit or miss. Now I generally
                            ask one of the regulars what they recommend.


                            1. re: chowdom

                              Unfortunately, I have not yet gotten there, and I read that the Solanos have sold the place. I have no idea whether it is being kept as the Lincoln Lounge or redone. I did read, however, that it was a Solano in the kitchen, so it is bound to change in any event.

              2. One question- Did the great pizza from your youth in Brooklyn have caramelized onions and gorgonzola toppings? You're comparing different pizzas, I'm sure.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Leslie

                  I get your point, but when you can't put out a decent crust with a nice balance of cheese and sauce, it's not good, no matter what you put on it.

                2. The original comment has been removed
                  1. We LOVE the pizza at AL Dente in Rye. It's not fancy, but it's good. Just sayin'.