10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC

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Davydd
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2008/03/07 18:52:06 (permalink)

10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC

Here is an article on the state of pizza in the US, a bit of history and and indictment of chains. Whether you agree with the 10 best assessment or not, it seems like a pretty good article.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/23484794/
#1

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    Baah Ben
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/07 21:00:53 (permalink)
    We were dying to get to Pizza Bianco, but we had a problem.. Waiting in line at 5:00PM in 113 degree temperature in the first week of May! Everyone absolutely raves about this place!

    MB's PR on the job!
    #2
    porkbeaks
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 08:09:44 (permalink)
    How can we trust a list that doesn't include even one pizza joint in Indiana or North Carolina? pb
    #3
    Pigiron
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 08:26:36 (permalink)
    Including Naples 45 is absurd. It's decent at best, it isn't even close to being the best pizza in Manhattan, much less the USA. Some might argue that it's not even the best pizza within Grand Central Terminal. Something's fishy with that list.
    #4
    leethebard
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 08:45:17 (permalink)
    Now this should be required reading for ANYONE who posts on any pizza thread. In a nutshell,this tells you what you need to know. Yes it is the ingredients,the cooking oven and techniques, and the skill of a pizza maker. And Yes,the fast food pizza chains compromised ALL those aspects EVERY ONE...look back at that list....WHICH one does Pizza Crud use...or any of the even-lesser fast food joints??? Taste a pizza from a place that sunscribes to the Neopolitan Association...and you'll see the difference. To quote a saying on so many pizza boxes: "You've tried the rest, now try the best". I'm not agreeing with every place on this list...just the sentiment about the making of a GREAT pizza.
    There is one other ingredient also, and some of our dedicated pizza makers here at Roadfood know this: LOVE! Love of pizza,good pizza and the love of enjoying a great taste tradition. Remember the first word in fast -food and think. Little we do for love(don't go there, some of you) is or should be "fast".
    To me,great pizza making is an art and a craft! And there is great art and crappy art...but rarely fast art!
    Yes, we're all entitled to eat what we like...like we can all prefer comic book art to a Rembrant,but,hell, there is a difference!
    I don't know what it means(actually,I do) but note most places mentioned are in the north east or California!
    Sorry I've rattled on, but pizza is and has been, and always will be a passion for me...good pizza!!! If you've never had a wood burning oven pizza made by a pizzaria sanctioned by the Neoploitan Association,some day,if you're lucky,try one....that's pizza as the Neoplitans named it!!!!! Not pizza hut stuff.
    I'm not telling you to dislike any thing else, just defining the art.
    YOU CAN LIKE A PINTO...YOU CAN EVEN ARGUE THAT YOU THINK IT IS A GREAT-MADE AUTOMOBILE....BUT FACTS ARE FACTS...AND A STUBBORN STREAK DOES NOT ALTER REALITY!!!!
    Thanks for listening to someone who loves and still enjoys the art of great Italian cooking, and especially my favorite food!
    #5
    JBarry713
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 08:52:45 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by porkbeaks

    How can we trust a list that doesn't include even one pizza joint in Indiana or North Carolina? pb


    You've got me, those two states are powerhouses when it comes to pizza.
    #6
    leethebard
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 08:53:57 (permalink)
    "Powerhouse", er, define!
    #7
    JBarry713
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 08:58:41 (permalink)
    Lombardi's has history on its side (and should be noted for that) but when it comes to pizza, I was a bit under whelmed when I went there. Don't get me wrong it was good, but I can think of many places that were not on the list that made better pies. For all the hype it gets, I'm surprised that Di Fara didn't make the list.
    #8
    BTB
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 09:02:16 (permalink)
    I agree very much with the statement in the article about chain pizza. "Chain pizza is for the most part awful stuff . . . The pizza chains were all started by business people, as opposed to individuals interested in (good) food." Unfortunately, chain pizza has done much to destroy most, but not all, the good old fashion mom and pop pizzerias in this country.

    As far as their list is concerned, I wasn't impressed with those they chose to list as the best pizzerias. Most were high-priced gourmet pizza restaurants and Neapolitan style, which is not my favorite (heresy, I know). While I don't live there, none of the great Chicago pizzerias even got honorable mention, so the article lacks much credibility in my estimation. I think they wanted to please the connoisseur class and not the working class.
    #9
    leethebard
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 09:03:38 (permalink)
    I'll agree there Jack...it's the 12th man on the field tradition in football. Sometimes a long great tradition gives you that little edge against an opponent...even when skill doesn't. What I liked about that article,I repeat, is not the list they generated, but the "art" aspect of making a great pie. A great piece of art can be made anywhere....a great artist isn't made...it's born in his soul!And he can travel from New york to California to create his art...or he can settle in North Carolina or Indiana...His art will still be great!!!!
    #10
    firecommander3565
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 09:43:09 (permalink)
    I saw this article... it seemed to me alot of these Pizza places were pretty "hoity toity"... and not one place from Chicago. When I think of pizza, sorry, Mario Balati does not come to mind.

    A few of those places in New York looked worthy, but some looked like a movie set. If you want a "real pizza" and you are in Chicago, check out Home Run Inn on 31st st or Edwardo's. For me Mario can make me alot of dishes, but Pizza... I'll stick with the real deal.
    #11
    MilwFoodlovers
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 09:49:28 (permalink)
    Another "best" list

    I know it's being picky but unless someone eats at every kumquat restaurant there is, they cannot say Luigi's Kumquats R US is the "best" and even then it is only your personal favorite. The same goes for pizza, hamburgers, hot dogs, gaegogi, etc. I do find the lists useful because they intrigue me into wanting to see what some person has the effrontery and presumptuousness to declare anything the "best".
    #12
    leethebard
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 09:53:11 (permalink)
    I'm agreeing with you.My comments were NOT about the list..but what constitutes a GREAT pizza. What we should take from the article are the thoughts about what is good. If the pizza maker in Chicago has the skills,the ingredients,etc, I do't doubt he'll make a good,real Italian work of art...as per the original blueprints!
    #13
    porkbeaks
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 10:01:25 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by firecommander3565

    I saw this article... it seemed to me alot of these Pizza places were pretty "hoity toity"... and not one place from Chicago. When I think of pizza, sorry, Mario Balati does not come to mind.

    A few of those places in New York looked worthy, but some looked like a movie set. If you want a "real pizza" and you are in Chicago, check out Home Run Inn on 31st st or Edwardo's. For me Mario can make me alot of dishes, but Pizza... I'll stick with the real deal.


    I agree with the "hoity toity" assessment and the fact that Chicago deserves mention on any "Best Pizza" list. However, as to Mario, I feel that if my own pizza is "real pizza" and way better than the majority of what's available out there, then I've got to believe that Mario can outdo my best effort. Why in the world would you think otherwise? Great pizza isn't really that difficult and Mario certainly knows his way around a kitchen. pb
    #14
    leethebard
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 10:09:20 (permalink)
    100& correct porkbeaks...But think...if great pizza is not that hard to do , why is there so much bad pizza??? I repeat...it's a lot of caring and LOVE of what you're making added to the skill. I'm sure you, like Mario love the art of pizza making!!!
    #15
    justtable
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 10:09:55 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by porkbeaks

    How can we trust a list that doesn't include even one pizza joint in Indiana or North Carolina? pb


    PIZZA KING...

    #16
    Pigiron
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 10:21:04 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by firecommander3565When I think of pizza, sorry, Mario Balati does not come to mind.



    He does to me. I crave his pizza fortnightly.


    [url]www.ottopizzeria.com[/url]
    #17
    The Travelin Man
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 10:41:55 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by Jack Barry

    Lombardi's has history on its side (and should be noted for that) but when it comes to pizza, I was a bit under whelmed when I went there. Don't get me wrong it was good, but I can think of many places that were not on the list that made better pies. For all the hype it gets, I'm surprised that Di Fara didn't make the list.


    I visited five NYC (Brooklyn and Manhattan) pizza joints on one Sunday afternoon last May, and I thought both Grimaldi's and Totonno's were better than Lombardi's. I did think that Lombardi's was better than DiFara's, however.

    As for the list, it seems that the writer aimed for an upscale audience (Pepe's may be the lone exception). My recollection is that all of the places on the list would be considered upscale pizza eateries - thus the inclusion of Naples 45 and Chez Panisse. I am sure that they make fine pizza, but I don't think I would CHOOSE to have pie at Naples 45 before I would choose Grimaldi's.
    #18
    Ciaoman
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 10:58:16 (permalink)
    I agree with The Travelin Man's comment about Pepe's. Upscale? No way...it's a neighborhood pizzeria with incredibly-good pie and a national reputation. Same with Sally's (as mentioned in the article). Both places make wonderful coal-oven apizza!
    #19
    leethebard
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 10:59:30 (permalink)
    Again,points well taken!
    #20
    NYPIzzaNut
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 11:43:52 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by leethebard

    Now this should be required reading for ANYONE who posts on any pizza thread. In a nutshell,this tells you what you need to know. Yes it is the ingredients,the cooking oven and techniques, and the skill of a pizza maker. And Yes,the fast food pizza chains compromised ALL those aspects EVERY ONE...look back at that list....WHICH one does Pizza Crud use...or any of the even-lesser fast food joints??? Taste a pizza from a place that sunscribes to the Neopolitan Association...and you'll see the difference. To quote a saying on so many pizza boxes: "You've tried the rest, now try the best". I'm not agreeing with every place on this list...just the sentiment about the making of a GREAT pizza.
    There is one other ingredient also, and some of our dedicated pizza makers here at Roadfood know this: LOVE! Love of pizza,good pizza and the love of enjoying a great taste tradition. Remember the first word in fast -food and think. Little we do for love(don't go there, some of you) is or should be "fast".
    To me,great pizza making is an art and a craft! And there is great art and crappy art...but rarely fast art!
    Yes, we're all entitled to eat what we like...like we can all prefer comic book art to a Rembrant,but,hell, there is a difference!
    I don't know what it means(actually,I do) but note most places mentioned are in the north east or California!
    Sorry I've rattled on, but pizza is and has been, and always will be a passion for me...good pizza!!! If you've never had a wood burning oven pizza made by a pizzaria sanctioned by the Neoploitan Association,some day,if you're lucky,try one....that's pizza as the Neoplitans named it!!!!! Not pizza hut stuff.
    I'm not telling you to dislike any thing else, just defining the art.
    YOU CAN LIKE A PINTO...YOU CAN EVEN ARGUE THAT YOU THINK IT IS A GREAT-MADE AUTOMOBILE....BUT FACTS ARE FACTS...AND A STUBBORN STREAK DOES NOT ALTER REALITY!!!!
    Thanks for listening to someone who loves and still enjoys the art of great Italian cooking, and especially my favorite food!
    Being from Jersey you should not have any trouble finding great pizza close by still I would presume?

    I am a native New Yorker, born in the Bronx, and lived my formative years in Yonkers, NY. I grew up on pizza, cannolis, crusty Italian bread, hoagies with Italian meats and cheeses and great lasagna and ravioli and spaghetti dishes. Where I lived - near Yonkers racetrack, there was always a great hole in the wall pizzeria within two blocks of my home.

    I have been away from NY since 1970, having living in SC, AL and OH. I have been in OH since 1977 - in and around Cincinnati - I now live in the boonies 60 miles or so east of Greater Cincinnati in Brown County which borders up against Adams County, where many Mennonites and Amish live.

    Trying to get NY type pizza here is like impossible.

    I have to go to Cinci or Dayton areas to find anything resembling decent pizza. I am part of a lunchbunch trio who generally eat somewhere in Cinci, Dayton, Wilmington area every Thursday trying as many new places as we can find. Being the only one in the group of Italian heritage it is always interesting when we visit an Italian pizzeria or restaurant as to what we order and what we thing of the food.

    There are a couple of places in Cinci where I enjoy pizza - Dewey's and Trattoria Roma - and in the Dayton area I have one place where their pizza resembles NY pizza - Troni's - in Kettering (run by an Albanian family). There are no pizzerias in Brown Country or Adams county worth a damn.

    I guess I am talking more than I need too for my first post here but I did want you folks to know I share the sentiments that the chains have ruined true good pizza for the masses and most citizens of the great USA have no clue what pizza is supposed to taste like.

    You will find me posting a lot on the Cincinnati food thread where my cohort franklee has been posting. He urged me to register here so I could post my own thoughts on our restaurant outings etc. I finally decided to do so since he and I have so many differences in food taste (he is from Tennessee originally).
    #21
    MacTAC
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 12:07:03 (permalink)
    I've eaten at Pepe's New Haven, Roseland Apizza and now Patsy's 1st Avenue. Next on my list are DiFara's and Lucali's. Living on Long Island, my opportunities to get to Manhattan and Brooklyn are numerous and appreciated, if underutilized.

    I finally got to Patsy's on Valentine's Day for a couple of slices. I thought they were excellent. Since then, I've twice returned, both times for whole pies, for two. As they are smaller than the usual, four slices was just perfect for each of us. Although smaller, I still think $1.50 for a slice and $11.00 for a pie seems a great bargain. The toppings are another story though. The first one we had four toppings; basil, mushrooms, half onions and half anchovies. I thought each was not equal to the level of the pizza and at $3.00 each, even the halves, they cost more than the pie. Their application was also haphazard, one slice having only a couple of samples on it. Thurday's pie was only half pepperoni and mine was without, as I preferred. All three of us thought Patsy's was very good.

    FWIW, I'm no gourmet, connoisseur or expert, but I loved Pepe's and Roseland. too.
    #22
    Bruce Bilmes and Susan Boyle
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 13:14:32 (permalink)
    Mario Batali - on his worst day, he is a better cook than I can ever dream of being. But... but... the pizza at Otto in NY (not on the MSNBC list) is idiosyncratic and for us underwhelming. The ingredients are of top quality, the thought behind the combination of ingredients is flawless, but that darn crust cooked on a griddle. It just doesn't do it for us. Good food but not good pizza.

    It's all personal taste, and our taste says Lombardi's is much superior to Grimaldi's in Brooklyn, which wouldn't make the cut on our list. Totonno's in Coney Island (and the branches we've tried) is terrific, as is Pepe's in New Haven (and the Fairfield branch) and De Lorenzo's (the one on Hudson) in Trenton. And Una Pizza Napoletana in NY is very special, but a lot of work. Those are all our favorites. Still haven't been to DiFara, so we can't say. And haven't been to Sally's in New Haven because to go there would mean missing out on a Pepe's white clam pie, and we just can't bring ourselves to do that.
    #23
    leethebard
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 17:46:32 (permalink)
    Wasn't the guy from Una pizza,originally from Pt. Pleasant NJ? Read an article about his move to Manhattan. We used to go to his shop in Point Pleasant. He belonged to the Neopolitan association and made superior pies.
    #24
    Bruce Bilmes and Susan Boyle
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 19:03:57 (permalink)
    quote:
    Originally posted by leethebard

    Wasn't the guy from Una pizza,originally from Pt. Pleasant NJ? Read an article about his move to Manhattan. We used to go to his shop in Point Pleasant. He belonged to the Neopolitan association and made superior pies.

    I believe you are correct about Point Pleasant.
    #25
    leethebard
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 19:18:35 (permalink)
    I thought so....if you ever go back,tell him his old customers down the shore sure miss him!!! His pizzas were among the BEST I've ever had in the states.He epitomizes what I meant about putting love into a pie!!!!
    #26
    Baah Ben
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 20:32:59 (permalink)
    I have heard Lombardi's is overrated, too. (Travling Man)

    Don't you think Mario's Public Relations Team had something to do with his new place making that list?
    #27
    leethebard
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 20:38:32 (permalink)
    Or maybe...just maybe...he knows how to make a great pizza!!!
    #28
    Robearjr
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/08 21:07:51 (permalink)
    a top ten pizza list from MSNBC seems a little cliche.

    They should have had Keith Olbermann do: "worst pizza in the world"
    #29
    Mosca
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    RE: 10 Best Pizzerias According to MSNBC 2008/03/09 08:33:44 (permalink)
    My bet is that half of the top 10 pizzas in the US come from places that weren't visited.

    I like this exchange; both posters have excellent points:
    quote:
    I agree with the "hoity toity" assessment and the fact that Chicago deserves mention on any "Best Pizza" list. However, as to Mario, I feel that if my own pizza is "real pizza" and way better than the majority of what's available out there, then I've got to believe that Mario can outdo my best effort. Why in the world would you think otherwise? Great pizza isn't really that difficult and Mario certainly knows his way around a kitchen. pb


    quote:
    100& correct porkbeaks...But think...if great pizza is not that hard to do , why is there so much bad pizza??? I repeat...it's a lot of caring and LOVE of what you're making added to the skill. I'm sure you, like Mario love the art of pizza making!!!


    For every good pizza I've had, I've had many bad pies and hundreds of mediocre pies. Even among small pizzerias making pies with love, you will see caterpillar ovens and frozen dough and canned sauce. Even among small pizzerias making pies with love, you will find people who are clueless as to how to combine ingredients. It IS an art, and most pizzari-istas are not artists, nor artisans. They are laborers and shop owners. Not without pride, but without knowledge and skill. And perhaps not in an economic position to acquire those things; it's better for a man to be successful selling hundreds of $9 pies a day than it is to fail selling twenty $13 pies a day. The first way feeds his family, after all.

    #30
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