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Sep 6, 2012 10:59 AM

Tony's Pizza - the St. Louis Style [San Francisco]

Wow. The pizza was it. I haven’t lived in St. Louis for more than 20 years (just semi-regular visits), and I have long given up on ever having St. Louis-style pizza in another town. But Tony’s has it. And does it better.

Well, I should say better than the usual suspect (Imo’s) in St. Louis—I can’t make the call on the better places that always make the ranks when St. Louisians vote on favorite pizza spots. But the crust at Tony’s is better – it is cracker-thin and super crisp. Delicious. The sauce is spot-on. Thick and sweet. Just the way it is supposed to be. And then the cheese. They called it provel, they claimed they got it delivered, but it was much better than the overly processed Imo’s variety. It had the right consistency (that gooey, plasticky nature that people who didn’t grow up in St. Louis can never really take to), but with more sharpness and nuance. It is what I think provel, with all its process-ness, should be like. With a good dose of parmesan and oregano, it was simply the perfect pizza. Well, if you are from St. Louis.

We got a pepperoni and a sausage. I prefer the sausage (it is my usual order in St. Louis), but would take either in a heartbeat.

The other pizzas that went by looked wonderful. It is too bad I will never try one.

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    1. re: Ruth Lafler

      That is not "St. Louis" style, it is an abomination of everything good about pizza. Sugary sauce and goo on a cracker. I grew up in St. Louis, left for nearly 20 years. I was shocked at how good pizza could be. I recently returned here and relive my pizza nightmares If you want to compare it to people's unexplained love for foods like Velveeta and Spam, I love Ramen noodles and cold Armor's chili. Ok I get it. But don't begin to convince the masses that this greasy, sticky, disgusting disk of nastiness is in any way a pizza. And what's worse, they're expensive. I would rather eat a Jacks frozen pizza for $3.00 than spend $20 on an Imo's. If you are going to tag a "St. Louis" style tag on anything, stick to St. Paul sandwiches and Gus' Pretzels.

      1. re: grillergorilla

        Abomination or not, he's trying to serve a regional style of pizza that appears to be authentic to St. Louis. He also serves a "Detroit style," square, marinara on top. Those will never be my go to pizzas at Tony's. but he takes his pizza seriously and is trying to replicate regional styles. I'm very happy he does not offer a Chicago deep dish.

        1. re: Dan Wodarcyk

          Why are you happy he doesn't offer Chicago deep dish?

          1. re: Dan Wodarcyk

            His new place in the works will specialize in Chicago style.

      2. I lived in St. Louis for a couple of years in the mid-90s. Your report reminded me of the mediocre, but cheap, pizza buffet I'd occasionally frequent at Maurizio's. I could never understand provel. I guess it's because I didn't grow up eating it.

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            1. Glad you liked it so much. I'll try it at some point too.